UK's Labour to include pledge on recognizing Palestinian state in election manifesto- Guardian

FILE PHOTO: Labour Party leader Keir Starmer and Prime Minister and Conservative Party leader Rishi Sunak debate, in Manchester

LONDON (Reuters) - Britain's opposition Labour Party is expected to include a pledge to recognise a Palestinian state at an appropriate time in peace talks in its election manifesto, the Guardian newspaper reported, citing people with knowledge of the document.

The manifesto, which sets out the party's policies ahead of the vote on July 4, will also pledge to ensure that recognizing a Palestinian state is not vetoed by a "neighbouring country", the newspaper reported.

Labour leader Keir Starmer said last month that he wanted to recognise a Palestinian state if he won power, but that such a move would need to come at the right time in a peace process.

Foreign Secretary David Cameron, a Conservative, said in January that Britain could formally recognise a Palestinian state if Palestinians had shown "irreversible progress" towards a two state solution, according to reports at the time.

Labour's pledge appears to be similar in substance, but including it in the manifesto could help to appease some voters who have been critical of the party's stance on the war in Gaza.

The manifesto will be finalised in a meeting with unions on Friday and will be presented next Thursday, the report said.

Labour did not immediately respond to Reuters' request for comment.

Spain, Ireland and Norway last month officially recognised a Palestinian state, seeking to accelerate efforts to secure a ceasefire in Israel's war with Hamas in Gaza. Slovenia also formally recognized Palestinian statehood on Tuesday.

(Reporting by Nilutpal Timsina in Bengaluru and Paul Sandle in London, editing by Deepa Babington)