JERUSALEM (AP) — The Latest on Interpol voting to include Palestine as a member (all times local):
Israel’s prime minister is criticizing the Palestinian acceptance to Interpol, saying it harms chances for peace.
Benjamin Netanyahu told U.S. Mideast envoy Jason Greenblatt that the successful attempt by the Palestinians to enter the international policing organization, among other steps it has taken recently, “seriously harms the chances to achieve peace.” He said the “diplomatic warfare” carried out by the Palestinians will not go unanswered.
In his meeting with Greenblatt on Wednesday, Netanyahu also chided the Palestinians for refusing to condemn a deadly attack by a Palestinian gunman on Israeli security men a day earlier.
Interpol voted Wednesday to include Palestine as a member state, in a new boost to Palestinian efforts for international recognition and influence amid long-stalled negotiations with Israel for full statehood.
The Palestinian foreign minister says Interpol’s decision to include the “State of Palestine” as a member is a “victory for law enforcement.”
Riad Malki said in a statement Wednesday that the vote by the Interpol general assembly “is the voice of confidence in the capacity of law enforcement in Palestine.” He promised to uphold Palestinian commitments to combating crime and strengthening the rule of law.
The Israeli government did not immediately comment on the vote. Former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak called it “another failure” for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
The U.N. General Assembly recognized Palestine as a non-member observer state in 2012 and UNESCO approved it as a full member. Opponents say recognizing Palestine in international organizations undermines long-stalled negotiations with Israel for full statehood.
International police agency Interpol has voted to include the “State of Palestine” as a member, in a new boost to Palestinian efforts for international recognition.
Interpol announced the inclusion of the “State of Palestine” as well as the Solomon Islands on Twitter and its website Wednesday after a vote by its general assembly in Beijing.
With the new votes, Interpol will have 192 member countries. Interpol didn’t immediately announce how many members supported Palestinian membership. UNESCO also approved Palestinian membership, prompting the U.S. and Israel to suspend funding out of protest.
Interpol, based in Lyon, France, is an international clearinghouse for arrest warrants and police cooperation against cross-border crime.