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Monday, September 26

McCully should come clean on where NZ stands on Palestine

New Zealand Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully needs to come clean on whether he supports the United Nations recognising Palestine as a state, Green Party foreign affairs spokesperson Keith Locke said today.

On Friday, Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas submitted an application for Palestine to be recognised as a state, and then addressed the UN General Assembly to explain the move. The application is to be considered by the UN Security Council.



"We need to be told where New Zealander stands on this important issue," said Mr Locke.

"United Nations recognition of statehood is timely and will hasten the end of Israeli occupation of Palestinian land.

"Up until now Murray McCully has been dodging the issue, saying he is waiting for the text of a possible General Assembly resolution.

"Mr McCully can't continue to sit on the fence now that a clear proposal for statehood is in front of the UN. Like other nations we have to stand up and be counted.

"This is particularly true if New Zealand is to succeed in its bid for a Security Council seat in 2015.

"The easiest way for New Zealand to blow its chances is to line up with the United States and Israel against the UN recognising a Palestinian state, when the great majority of UN members are supporting it," said Mr Locke.