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Holy See declines to co-sponsor Palestinian flag initiative at UN

A Palestinian woman waves a Palestinian flag with a UN stickers attached on it (AP Photo/Hussein Malla)

The Holy See has asked to be removed from a draft resolution prepared by the Palestinian United Nations (UN) mission which calls for the flags of Palestine and the Holy See to fly at the UN.

According to a Reuters report, the Palestinian draft resolution calls for the flags of non-member observer states to “be raised at the United Nations Headquarters and Offices following the flags of the member states of the United Nations.”

The Holy See and the State of Palestine are both non-member observer states at the UN. Currently, only member states’ flags fly at the UN’s headquarters.

The draft resolution comes a month before Pope Francis is due to address the UN General Assembly on September 2.

According to Reuters, the Holy See did not give its explicit consent to be added to the resolution.

In a note circulated to some UN members the Holy See said that while it was not opposed to the Palestinians initiating a resolution to fly their own flag, the Holy See had no plans to join the initiative.

The note, seen by Reuters, said: “The Holy See does not intend to co-sponsor a draft resolution that the State of Palestine may eventually present on the matter.

“The Holy See asks the Permanent Observer Mission of the State of Palestine to the UN kindly to remove in its draft resolution any reference to the ‘Holy See’ and any generic reference ‘on behalf of the Observer States’.”