Össur Skarphéðinsson, Icelandic Minister for Foreign Affairs told the United Nations General Assembly yesterday that Iceland was determined to fully recognize Palestine and that he will next week put to the Parliament of Iceland a resolution on the recognition of Palestine as a sovereign and independent state. The minister said Iceland would also vote yes when a resolution on the Palestinian statehood comes to a vote in the General Assembly.
Minister Skarphéðinsson said that recognizing Palestine would be in the spirit of reconciliation in the region and that it would be foolish to deny Palestine her right to statehood In the middle of the democratic revolution brought on by the fresh breeze of the Arabic spring.
The minister confirmed that that the Icelandic Parliament had unanimously agreed to substantially increase Iceland's contribution to developing nations in the coming financial year. It has also accepted a time-bound plan to raise our aid to the goal of 0.7 per cent of the Gross National Income. Minister Skarphéðinsson stressed the importance of taking action for protecting the environment and fighting global warming, by pushing for a green revolution; a shift from fossil fuels to renewable energy. Iceland had something to share in this regard, on geothermal technology. When it came to the effects of global warming, few places were as hard hit as the Arctic.