Government accepts Sinn Féin Palestinian motion

Gerry Adams says Ireland part of the consensus for peace and progress in Middle East

 Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams: “This motion is about hope, in a region where there is precious little hope at this time and where tensions are increasing daily.” Photograph: EPA

Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams: “This motion is about hope, in a region where there is precious little hope at this time and where tensions are increasing daily.” Photograph: EPA

 

The Government has accepted a Sinn Féin Private Member’s motion recognising the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination.

Minister of State for European Affairs Dara Murphy told the Dáil in a late night sitting the motion was a positive contribution. There was a great deal in it which reflected consistent Government policy, he said.

“It has been the objective of this Government since it took office to work to bring about the achievement, in concrete reality and not just in theory or symbolism, of a fully sovereign state of Palestine,” he added.

Sinn Féin leader Gerry Adams said the Government’s acceptance of the motion would mean both Houses of the Oireachtas would now support the Palestinian people. The Seanad recently passed a similar motion.

“This is a substantial and positive development, which means that Ireland is now a significant part of the consensus for peace and progress in the Middle East,” he added.

“I have long argued, as a colonised people with a history of resistance and a peace process, we could play a leadership role in the search for peace in that region.”

The Sinn Féin motion, he said, was very straightforward. It recognised the right of the Palestinians to self-determination and “to have their own state as well as the right of the state of Israel to exist within secure borders”.

Mr Adams said it also called on the Government to officially recognise the state of Palestine on the basis of the 1967 borders, with east Jerusalem as the capital.

“This motion is about hope, in a region where there is precious little hope at this time and where tensions are increasing daily,” he added.

“There is an onus on the international community to provide meaningful leadership.”