(Yorgos Karahalis/Pool photo via AP)
Greece Parliament

Greece joined several other European countries in recognizing a Palestinian state with a non-binding symbolic declaration which took place after Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas addressed the Greek parliament on Tuesday.

Greek lawmakers unanimously approved a resolution calling on the country’s left-led government to formally recognize Palestinian statehood.

Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras has declined to say when Greece could adopt the parliamentary resolution.

Tsipras’ government is trying to balance improved relations with Israel with his party’s longstanding support for a Palestinian state. Tsipras visited Israel last month, meeting with Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. He also met with Abbas in Ramallah.

In spite of the  vote, relations between Israel and Greece remain strong following an agreement on bilateral cooperation in various industries and Greece’s refusal to implement the European Union’s (EU) guidelines to label Israeli products from Judea and Samaria, the Golan Heights, and eastern Jerusalem.

However, the resolution is not a formal recognition of a Palestinian state such as the one Sweden made last year, which has strained relations with Israel.

By: JNS.org and AP