Published January 08, 2015
British lawmakers have voted in favor of recognizing Palestine as a state, a symbolic move intended to increase pressure for a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Legislators in the House of Commons voted 274 to 12 on Monday to support a motion calling on the British government to "recognize the state of Palestine alongside the state of Israel."
Prime Minister David Cameron and other government leaders abstained.
The government says the vote will not change Britain's official diplomatic stance. Middle East Minister Tobias Ellwood said the U.K. would recognize Palestinian statehood when it would help bring about peace.
Earlier this month Sweden's new Prime Minister Stefan Lofven said his government would recognize the state of Palestine, an announcement that drew praise from Palestinian officials and criticism from Israel.