Middle East, Europe

Premier Sanchez vows that Spain will work to recognize Palestinian state

Spanish prime minister says his future government ‘rejects indiscriminate massacre of Palestinians’

Alyssa Mcmurtry  | 15.11.2023 - Update : 16.11.2023
Premier Sanchez vows that Spain will work to recognize Palestinian state


Spain’s new government will work nationally and within Europe to “recognize the state of Palestine,” the country’s acting prime minister announced on Wednesday.

During the debate ahead of the vote expected to solidify his left-wing coalition government, Pedro Sanchez told lawmakers that this recognition and diplomatic effort is the “first commitment of this legislature.”

He said the international community must recognize the Palestinian state because it is a “solution” that has long been “justly demanded” by the Palestinian people.

Sanchez also urged for an immediate cease-fire in Gaza, strict compliance with humanitarian law, and for Israeli authorities to allow international aid to reach the besieged population.

The Spanish leader firmly condemned the Oct. 7 Hamas attack on Israel and called for the release of hostages.

“But with the same clarity, we reject the indiscriminate massacre of Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank,” he said.

Sanchez also emphasized the importance of diplomacy and the urgent need for a peace conference.

His remarks on Palestine come during a debate on government formation. After negotiating with several regional and separatist parties, he appears to have the needed majority backing to form a left-wing coalition government.

However, members of the far-left Podemos party, which is within his coalition, pushed Sanchez to go further on the question of Palestine.

In evaluating Sanchez’s speech, acting Equality Minister Irene Montero said Spain should impose sanctions on Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and break diplomatic ties with Israel.

“We need a lot more than words in an investiture debate to stop the planned genocide that Israel is carrying out in Palestine … the distance between these words and inaction is painful,” tweeted Podemos leader and Social Rights Minister Ione Belarra.

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