Palestine voted into Interpol

PA President Mahmoud Abbas

Palestine Joins Interpol, Despite Israeli Opposition

Interpol voted Wednesday to admit the State of Palestine as a member over Israeli objections at the global police organization's general assembly in Beijing. Global police agency Interpol voted Wednesday to include the Palestinian state as a member state, in a new boost to Palestinian efforts for worldwide recognition and influence amid long-stalled negotiations with Israel for full statehood.

"The State of Palestine and the Solomon Islands become INTERPOL member countries", Interpol tweeted after the vote.

Israel's Foreign Ministry strongly opposes the Palestinians' entry into Interpol, arguing that it encourages Palestinian unilateralism and citing concerns that the Palestinians could compromise sensitive information shared among the group's members.

"On this joyous occasion, the State of Palestine reiterates its commitment to upholding its obligations and contributing to fighting crime and furthering the rule of law".

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Israel's Deputy Minister for Diplomacy, Michael Oren, criticised the vote, writing on Twitter: "By admitting "Palestine", which praises terrorists of the past and refuses to condemn those of today, Interpol makes the world less safe". Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak called it "another failure" for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. In the eyes of many governments across the globe, Palestinian statehood is inevitable, and they feel they need to vote accordingly in worldwide forums.

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More than 75 per cent of Interpol members are said to have voted to approve the Palestinian bid.

Cardin said any "red notices" issued by the Palestinians "will not be recognized in many countries, including the United States".

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At the start of the meeting, Ashrawi welcomed Ambassador Riley to Palestine and expressed her appreciation to New Zealand for being one of four countries to sponsor UNSC Resolution 2334 last December and for its continued support of Palestinian self-determination and freedom.

A page on the Interpol website listed Palestine as a member since 27 September 2017.

Riad Malki said in a statement Wednesday that the vote by the Interpol general assembly "is the voice of confidence in the capacity of law enforcement in Palestine".

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