31 Oct 2014
Sweden's new centre-left government announced this week that it has recognised the Palestinian state, making it the first EU country to do so. Sweden's foreign minister, Margot Wallstrom, told Al Jazeera that recognising Palestine will put each party on a level playing field and help move peace talks forward. She said that Sweden is hoping that this new development will inject some new dynamics into the now-suspended peace talks by making the parties less unequal. Wallstrom also said she hoped that Sweden's recognition of Palestine would give new hope to young people in both Palestine and Israel. Meanwhile Israel has recalled its ambassador to Sweden in protest against the decision.
© Al Jazeera
Editor’s Note: You might also be interested in commentary from Swedish journalist Linda Nyberg in Stockholm who reports that Sweden is also giving financial support to Palestine to the tune of 150 million Euros for a five year strategy towards building the new state and supporting human rights. Writing in Foreign Policy in Focus, John Feffer says, "the French government is reportedly mulling a recognition move of its own."