Spain's prime minister says he will propose that parliament recognizes a Palestinian state

FILE - Pedro Sanchez, Spain's Prime Minister delivers his speech at the Annual Meeting of World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, on Jan. 17, 2024. Sánchez said Saturday March 9, 2024 that he will propose that Spain's parliament recognizes a Palestinian state. (AP Photo/Markus Schreiber, File)

BILBAO, Spain (AP) — Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sánchez said Saturday that he will propose that Spain's parliament recognizes a Palestinian state.

“I will propose granting Spain’s recognition to the Palestinian state,” Sánchez said. "I do this out of moral conviction, for a just cause and because it is the only way that the two states, Israel and Palestine, can live together in peace.”

Sánchez added his voice to a chorus of other European leaders and government officials who have said that they could support a two-state solution in the Middle East as international frustration grows with Israel’s actions in the Palestinian territories.

French President Emmanuel Macron said last month that it's not “taboo” for France to recognize a Palestinian state. British Foreign Minister David Cameron said that the United Kingdom could officially recognize a Palestinian state after a cease-fire in the Israel-Hamas war.

Sánchez said that his position on the conflict in the Gaza Strip is much like his country’s support for Ukraine following Russia’s full-scale invasion more than two years ago.

He stressed that Spain demanded “respect for international law from Russia, and from Israel, for the violence to end, the recognition of two states, and for humanitarian aid to reach Gaza."

His comments at a rights conference in the city of Bilbao came as aid shipments were headed for Gaza amid the humanitarian crisis in Gaza and a new international willingness to work around Israeli restrictions.

Five months after Hamas militants attacked Israel on Oct. 7, killing about 1,200 people and taking 250 others hostage, Israel’s military has battered the territory, killing more than 30,000 Palestinians, according to the Gaza Health Ministry.