In an historic, symbolic and controversial act the Palestinian flag has been raised over a UN building for the first time.
UNESCO, the world body’s Paris-based culture, education and science agency, angered Israel and the US when it effectively recognised ‘Palestine’ as a state, by allowing it to become a member.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas spoke at the flag-raising ceremony. He told the audience it was an historic moment which, he said, augured well for the future entry of the Palestinian state to other international organisations.
Membership of UNESCO is not expected to have any significant impact on the Palestinians’ campaign for full UN membership, which would require approval by the Security Council. The US has restated its opposition and said it would use its veto to block that move.
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