Palestinian leaders urge PLO to suspend recognition of Israel


Palestinian leaders voted on Monday to call for the suspension of recognition of Israel as they met in response to US President Donald Trump's declaration of Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

The vote ordered the Palestine Liberation Organisation to suspend its recognition of Israel until it "recognises the state of Palestine", cancels its annexation of east Jerusalem and stops settlement activity, a statement said.

It was unclear if the vote by the Palestinian Central Council, a high-ranking arm of the PLO, was binding. A previous vote by the council in 2015 to suspend security coordination with Israel was never implemented.

Council members "mandate the Palestine Liberation Organisation's executive committee to suspend recognition of Israel until it recognises the state of Palestine, cancels the decision to annex east Jerusalem and stops settlement activity," the statement said.

The vote was 74 in favour, two against, with 12 abstentions, according to an AFP journalist present.

The move came after Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas on Sunday called Trump's peace efforts the "slap of the century" as he opened the meeting.

While the Palestinians have been deeply angered by Trump's Jerusalem declaration, they also risk facing an international backlash if they follow through on the call to suspend recognition of Israel.