Fianna Fáil Spokesperson Foreign Affairs Seán Ó Fearghaíl TD has called on the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs Eamon Gilmore to publicly support the formation of a Palestinian State at the UN in September, recognising that a two-state solution is the best path to peace in the Middle East.

Deputy Ó Fearghaíl said: “Nabil Shaath, a senior Palestinian negotiator, is currently visiting Ireland seeking support for the UN meeting in September.  I believe the Government must go to that meeting and support the establishment of a State for the Palestinian people.

“Fianna Fáil has always supported the cause of the Palestinian people and encouraged all sides to work for peace in the region.  Indeed we were heartened to see President Obama appoint Senator George Mitchell as his Middle East Peace Envoy following his extraordinary work on the Good Friday Agreement.  I know Senator Mitchell, who has now retired, is hopeful that genuine progress for peace can be made between Israel and the Palestinians.”

“I have been in contact with Sadaka – the Ireland Palestine Alliance.  I support their efforts to raise the profile of this issue.  Fianna Fáil has today tabled a motion before the Dáil calling on the Government to formally recognise a Palestinian State.  We believe this State should be based on Israel’s pre-1967 borders.

Deputy Ó Fearghaíl concluded: “I am encouraging the Government to accept the motion and demonstrate that the elected representatives of the Irish people stand with the Palestinians in the pursuit of peace and a viable, permanent, secure State.”