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Barbados takes bold step to officially recognize Palestine as state

In this file picture, a protester waves a Palestinian flag towards the border fence during a protest marking Land Day at the border between the Gaza Strip and the Israeli-occupied territories. (Photo by AFP)

Barbados has announced its decision to officially recognize Palestine as a state, becoming the 11th member of the Caribbean Community (CARICOM) to adopt such a measure.

Foreign Minister Kerrie Symmonds said in a statement on Friday that the cabinet had “made the determination that the time is ripe for us to have a formal diplomatic recognition of the State of Palestine.”

“How can we say we want a [so-called] two-state solution if we do not recognize Palestine as a State,” Symmonds stated.

He stressed that the island nation has always maintained at the United Nations that there should be a two-state solution.

Symmonds criticized, however, the fact that Barbados has never recognized Palestine until now.

“I think [it was] an error that we have made through the years,” he said. “And now, we have formally reached out to the State of Palestine to signal our intention to formally recognize them as a State,” he added.

Meanwhile, the Palestinian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Expatriates has welcomed the decision of Barbados to recognize the State of Palestine with East al-Quds as its capital.

The foreign ministry said in a statement that the step reflects Barbados’ eagerness to support the Palestinian people and their inalienable and legitimate rights in their land.

The ministry emphasized that the resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is being systematically destroyed as a result of the Tel Aviv regime’s escalatory policies and plans, especially through the continuation of the genocidal war in the Gaza Strip and the expansion of colonialism.

It further called on all countries that have not yet recognized the State of Palestine to take such a step as soon as possible to confirm the international community’s determination in order to end the suffering of the Palestinian nation.

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