Palestine Officially Recognized as State by Vatican; Israel is Not Pleased


The Vatican has become the latest country to recognize the state of Palestine, after a new treaty was finalized on Wednesday.

In a move that has ruffled Israel’s feathers, the Vatican has finalized a treaty as of Wednesday that recognized Palestine as a state. The treaty is the first official record that the Vatican recognizes Palestine, though the U.N. General Assembly voted to recognize it in 2012. The treaty makes it completely clear that the Holy See has altered its recognition to the state of Palestine, rather than simply the Palestine Liberation Organization. Reverend Fredrico Lombardi spoke for the Vatican, stating that “it’s a recognition that the state exists.” The move has “disappointed” the Israeli Foreign Minister, who feels that “this move does not promote the peace process and distances the Palestinian leadership from returning to direct and bilateral negotiations.”

Officially a State

A few different countries have recognized Palestine as a state, though many Western European countries have held off. Countries of Asia, South America and Africa have given Palestine their recognition, as well as Sweden and several parliaments. Overall, the Holy See has appeared to “downplay” the latest developments, implying that the 2012 press statement when they encouraged the vote by the UN counted towards official recognition of the state of Palestine.

Israel and Israeli groups feel that the move was ill advised. The American Jewish Committee called it “counter productive” towards attempts at true peace between Palestinians and Israelites. Abraham Foxman of the Anti-Defamation League, said they “appreciate that the Vatican’s basic intention is to promote Israeli-Palestinian reconciliation,” however “we believe that this diplomatic recognition will be unhelpful to that end.”

The treaty, while “will be submitted to the respective authorities for approval ahead of setting a date in the near future for the signing,” came only days before the President of Palestine, Mahmoud Abbas, visited the Vatican for Francis to canonize two new Saints.


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