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JPost - Colombia: We will not recognize Palestinian state

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    JPost - Thu, Mar 31, 2011 The Jerusalem Post Colombia: We will not recognize Palestinian state By GIL SHEFLER 03/31/2011 09:50
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 31, 2011
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      JPost - Thu, Mar 31, 2011
      The Jerusalem Post
      Colombia: We will not recognize Palestinian state
      By GIL SHEFLER
      03/31/2011 09:50

      http://www.jpost.com/International/Article.aspx?id=214543


      Israel wins rare victory in Latin America with Colombian President
      Calderon announcement at World Jewish Congress meeting in Bogota.


      After suffering a series of diplomatic defeats to the Palestinians in
      Latin America, Israel won a rare victory on Wednesday when Colombia
      announced that it would not unilaterally recognize a Palestinian state.

      Colombian President Juan Manuel Santos told a delegation of the World
      Jewish Congress in a meeting in the Colombian capital of Bogota that his
      government would not recognize Palestinian statehood as “a matter of
      principle.”


      “We value your friendship and courage for Israel and the Jewish people,”
      World Jewish Congress President Ronald Lauder said. “We also appreciate
      that you have withstood pressure from fellow Latin American leaders to
      prematurely recognize a Palestinian state.”

      In the past half year a string of Latin American countries, mostly with
      left-leaning governments, including Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, Paraguay
      and Guyana have recognized Palestinian statehood. Chile, which has a
      right-leaning government, has also recognized Palestinian statehood with
      caveats.

      The announcement in Bogota represents an unusual diplomatic victory for
      Israel in a region where the Middle-Eastern conflict is often seen
      through the prism of local politics, with rightwing politicians siding
      with Israel which is often perceived as an extension of the US, and
      leftwing politicians supporting the antagonist Palestinians.

      The right-leaning government of Colombia is considered to be a staunch
      supporter of the US in the region and has close ties with Israel.

      Latin American Jewish Congress President Jack Terpins thanked Bogotá for
      fighting the growing influence of the Iran, which is a close friend of
      Colombia’s neighbor and occasional rival Venezuela.

      “In Colombia, you know what horrible suffering terrorism inflicts on
      people,” Terpins said. “After the two deadly bomb attacks against the
      AMIA Center and the Israeli Embassy in Buenos Aires in the 1990s that
      were orchestrated by Iran we Jews know that extremists must be
      vigorously opposed. We hope that a consensus can be reached among
      political leaders here that currently, Tehran cannot be a partner for
      closer political or economic cooperation in any shape or form.”

      The World Jewish Congress is a group representing Jewish communities in
      92 countries around the world which serves as the diplomatic arm of the
      Jewish people to governments, parliaments and international organizations.
      After suffering a series of diplomatic defeats to the Palestinians in
      Latin America, Israel won a rare victory on Wednesday when Colombia
      announced that it would not unilaterally recognize a Palestinian state.
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