David Cameron has said he looks forward to the day when Britain recognises the state of Palestine but insisted it will only happen when a two-state solution is achieved.
The Prime Minister said: “It should be part of the negotiations that bring about a two-state solution.
“That is what we all want to see – a state of Israel living happily and peacefully alongside a state of Palestine and that is when we should do the recognition.”
He was replying to Bradford East MP David Ward who asked during Prime Minister’s Questions whether now was the time for recognition in light of Monday’s historic vote.
Mr Ward said: “The Palestinian ambassador, Mr (Manuel) Hassassian, has described Monday’s vote on recognition of the Palestinian state as a momentous vote, indeed it was.
“He has also said that now is the time for UK Government to listen to its own democratically elected Parliament and to take decisive, political action by recognising the state of Palestine and upholding its historical, moral and legal responsibilities towards Palestine.
“Do you agree?”
MPs backed the recognition of the state of Palestine alongside Israel, but the Government is not bound to do anything as a result of the vote.
The vote of 274 to 12, majority 262, saw MPs on all sides urge the Government to “recognise the state of Palestine alongside the state of Israel” as part of a “contribution to securing a negotiated two state solution”.
Speaking in the backbench business debate, Middle East Minister Tobias Ellwood said a Palestinian state would only be recognised when the time was right.