Sweden will become the first nation in Europe since the Cold War to recognize Palestine as a sovereign state.

Prime Minister Stefan Lofven made the announcement during his inaugural address Friday. He leads a center-left coalition of Social Democrats and Greens.

Although it seems like a rare victory for the Palestinians, the majority of U.N. member states, representing roughly 80 percent of the global population, also recognize the state of Palestine.

China and Russia both recognize Palestine, while the United States and most of Western Europe do not.

A U.S. State Department spokeswoman said the following: “We certainly support Palestinian statehood, but it can only come through a negotiated outcome, a resolution of final status issues and mutual recognitions by both parties.”

— Posted by Peter Z. Scheer

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