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Interpol Approves Palestinian Membership Bid | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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INTERPOL Global Complex for Innovation (IGCI), pictured in Singapore, on September 30, 2014 (AFP Photo/Mohd Fyrol)

Interpol on Wednesday approved an application by the Palestinian Authority to join the international police organization in a move opposed by Israel.

“New member countries State of Palestine and Solomon Islands bring INTERPOL’s membership to 192,” Interpol said on its Twitter account as the organization held its annual general assembly in Beijing.

“This victory was made possible because of the principled position of the majority of Interpol members,” Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad Al-Maliki said in a statement.

The Palestine Liberation Organization said on Twitter that more than 75 percent of Interpol members voted to approve membership.

“On this joyous occasion, the State of Palestine reiterates its commitment to upholding its obligations and contributing to fighting crime and furthering the rule of law,” Maliki said.

The Palestinian bid was part of efforts to push for membership in international institutions to advance the goal of statehood.

Israel consistently opposes such attempts and lobbies hard against them. It claimed victory last year when the Palestinian bid to join Interpol was suspended.

However, the foreign ministry in Tel Aviv said earlier that Israel’s efforts to delay the vote until next year had failed.

Palestine gained observer status at the United Nations in 2012 and since then has joined more than 50 international organizations and agreements, according to the Palestinian foreign ministry.

Among them are the International Criminal Court and the United Nations heritage body UNESCO.