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Published on 27 September 2017

#Israel - Interpol votes to admit Palestine as full member

International police organisation backs Palestinian membership by 75-24 votes despite determined Israeli opposition.

Published on the 27th of Septembre 2017 in The Guardian

Interpol has voted to admit Palestine as a full member, dealing a significant diplomatic blow to Israel, which has strenuously lobbied against Palestinian admission.

In a secret vote of representatives of the international police organisation’s members in China, Palestinian membership was approved by 75 to 24 votes, with 34 abstentions – exceeding the two-thirds requirement of yes to no votes.

“The State of Palestine and the Solomon Islands are now Interpol member countries,” the organisation tweeted after the ballot.

Set up almost a century ago, Interpol was designed to help countries share police intelligence and cooperate against crime that crosses international borders, including terrorism and human trafficking,. It now has 192 international members.

It is perhaps best known to the wider public for its “red notice” system, which issues requests to locate and provisionally arrest individuals pending extradition.

The Palestinian bid was part of a series of efforts to push for membership of international institutions and thereby advance the goal of statehood.

Palestine gained observer status at the United Nations in 2012 and since then has joined more than 50 international organisations and agreements, including the international criminal court and the United Nations heritage body, Unesco.

Israel campaigned to block the Interpol move and made a series of procedural moves in an attempt to prevent the issue coming to a vote.

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