“The Palestinian leader came to Central America and asked to visit us in Colombia. We of course told his that he’s welcome, and he will come on October 11 in the morning,” said Santos.
According to Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Malki, eight members of the U.N. Security Council have pledged their support for the recognition of a Palestinian state and lobbyists “are working hard to have a ninth and a tenth.”
Santos asserted that while he does support the Palestinian right to statehood, he does not believe a bid for U.N. membership is the appropriate method to gain independence.
“Colombia wants Palestine to have their own state. Colombia supports the right of the Palestinians to have a state and Colombia wants that to be the result of an agreement between the two parties, so that they really can live in peace in that region of the world which has been so plagued by violence,” explained the Colombian head of state.
The Palestinian National Authority need the support of nine members to have the majority support of the Security Council.
Al-Malki explained that the Palestinians are looking to lobby the support of Colombia, Bosnia, and Portugal — three of the 10 non-permanent members of the U.N. Security Council.
Even with the requisite nine votes, the U.S. has pledged to use its veto to block the request, but the Palestinians hope they can at least claim a diplomatic victory by securing a majority in the Security Council.
“If Colombia can somehow provide any help, if we can somehow do something for the two parties to approach each other and reach agreements, we will be ready to do so if they want to use us in any way,” Santos concluded.