Turkey welcomes UN decision to raise Palestinian flag

Turkey welcomes UN decision to raise Palestinian flag

Turkey welcomes UN decision to raise Palestinian flag

AP photo

Turkey has welcomed the United Nations’ approval for the raising of the Palestinian flag at the U.N. headquarters, maintaining that such a step will help realize the Palestinian people’s dream of living freely in their sovereign state.

“This resolution marks an important step in regards to the goal of recognition of the Palestinian state by more countries in the entire world and the realization of the longing of the Palestinian people for a free life in their own sovereign state which has East Jerusalem as its capital city and within the pre-1967 borders by immediately ending the ongoing occupation,” the Turkish Foreign Ministry said in a written statement released Sept. 11.

The U.N. General Assembly overwhelmingly approved a resolution on Sept. 10 allowing the Palestinians, as well as the Holy See, to raise their flags at U.N. headquarters – a symbolic step pursued by the Palestinians in their quest for an independent state.

Israel strongly objected to the proposal and joined seven other countries, including the United States, in voting “no”; 119 nations voted “yes” and 45 abstained.

The resolution allows non-member observer states to raise their flags alongside those of the 193 U.N. member states. The Palestinians and the Vatican are the only two observers, but the Holy See has backed away from the effort, saying it will not raise its flag before Pope Francis visits the U.N. later this month.