Palestinians allowed to raise flag at UN headquarters

United Nations, United States: The UN General Assembly voted Thursday to allow the Palestinians to raise their flag at its headquarters in a diplomatic victory in their campaign for statehood.


A resolution was adopted by member states with 119 in favor, eight voting against — including Israel and the United States — and 45 abstentions.

The text allows the flags of Palestine and the Holy See — both of which have non-member observer status — to be hoisted alongside those of the member states.

The world body now has 20 days to implement the move, which would be in time for a visit by Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas on September 30.

“It is a symbolic thing, but another step to solidify the pillars of the state of Palestine in the international arena,” said Riyad Mansour, the Palestinian representative to the UN.

In Paris, Palestinian prime minister Rami Hamdallah called the flag vote “a step on the road towards Palestine becoming a full member of the United Nations.”

He spoke after meeting with French Prime Minister Manuel Valls and expressed hope France would one day recognize a Palestinian state — something it has so far refused to do.