UK should say an unequivocal yes to recognition of Palestine


This week the United Nations General Assembly is expected to vote on upgrading the recognition of Palestine at the UN.

Today I have written an article for the Huffington Post calling on the UK government to support Palestine at the UN without preconditions.

“Proper recognition of Palestine by the UN General Assembly is not the same as peace in the Middle East, but it is a step on the road. Peace can only come from negotiations between the parties and international agreements. Many of those agreements are already there but it takes will to make them stick. British collusion in double standards does not, and cannot, help achieve that. There are first principles at stake here. If UN recognition is a matter of right for Israel, it cannot suddenly become a matter for horse-trading because the request comes from the Palestinians.

Labour and most UK opposition parties already support UN recognition of Palestine. The deputy prime minister has suggested that the Liberal Democrat wing of the UK’s coalition government supports it too. 100 MPs from across seven different political parties have signed a parliamentary motion calling on the UK to vote yes at the UN General Assembly.

“It’s time for Britain’s prime minister and foreign secretary to drop the double standards and confirm that they will do so.”

Read the full article on the Huffington Post here.

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Richard Burden

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I was Labour Member of Parliament for Birmingham Northfield between 1992 and 2019 and a former Shadow Transport Minister. I now chair Healthwatch in Birmingham and Solihull, and the West Midlands Board of Remembering Srebrenica. I also work as a public affairs consultant. I am an effective community advocate and stakeholder alliance builder with a passion for human rights. I am a trustee of the Balfour Project charity and of Citizens Advice Birmingham, and a former Chair of Medical Aid for Palestinians.

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