The Palestinians are gearing up for their statehood bid in September – Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki on Saturday said that numerous states will recognize the Palestinian state in the upcoming days and weeks.
The foreign minister named Honduras and South Sudan, saying they will be the first to declare their recognition, but refused to name the other states "due to Israel's response and its attempt to stop this wave, which will give the Palestinian bid a momentum at the United Nations."
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Al-Maliki noted that Honduras will declare its recognition on August 20, despite Israel's continuing efforts to thwart the move. Concurrently, he added, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas will continue his visits to European states, including "states that play a major role in the European Union" in an effort to persuade them to support the Palestinian bid.
The foreign minister claimed that 122 states have recognized Palestine thus far.
Meanwhile, preparations for the declaration of statehood continue throughout the West Bank. Palestinian Authority security forces' spokesman General Adnan Damiri said that the security apparatus is gearing up to thwart any manifestations of violence next month, as PA officials submit their statehood bid at the United Nations.
In an interview with al Sharq al Awsat, Damiri said: "We are in favor of the official position, which is a request for recognition with peaceful popular support. We are not foreseeing any violence – and will stop any such attempt.
Commenting on Israel's predictions of violent protests in the West Bank in September, al- Maliki said: "Israel is busy fabricating plots on future protests."
Elior Levy is Ynet's Palestinian affairs correspondent
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