Parliament discussing govt's motion to recognise Palestine

Ljubljana, 4 June - The National Assembly will meet on Tuesday for an emergency session to debate the government's motion to recognise an independent state of Palestine, but it will not take a vote on it, as originally planned. The vote has been delayed as the Democrats (SDS) filed on Monday a motion for a consultative referendum.

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Palestinian flag.
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The government unanimously endorsed the motion for Slovenia to recognise Palestine last Thursday and referred it to parliament for final approval, with the vote initially scheduled to take place today.

Prime Minister Robert Golob said that Palestine was being recognised within the 1967 borders, or within the borders that would be agreed by the parties in a future peace agreement.

The MPs from all three coalition parties, who requested the emergency session, said that Slovenia's recognition of Palestine was the only right path to supporting peace, stability and security in the region and advancing a two-state solution.

The opposition parties SDS and New Slovenia (NSi) were meanwhile critical of the proposal to recognise Palestine, saying that it was a campaign move ahead of the EU election, however the NSi said that when it came to the vote in parliament it would abstain.

The SDS then filed on Monday a motion for a consultative referendum on whether Slovenia should recognise Palestine, saying that the government's decision caused Slovenia long-term damage "because it gives support to the terrorist organisation Hamas".

The largest opposition party also believes that voters have the right to decide on such an important foreign policy topic which will have long-term consequences for Slovenia.

Later in the day, following a lengthy debate, the parliamentary Foreign Policy Committee endorsed the recognition motion. Only the SDS MPs on the committee voted against it.

The referendum motion is unlikely to prevent recognition of Palestine, as the coalition has a strong majority in parliament, but it will delay it, by 30 days at least.

© STA, 2024