On Friday, just two days before 70 nations gather in Paris to vote on an anti-Israel decree, a new embassy for the Palestinian Authority will be inaugurated in Vatican City. This will be the first Palestinian embassy to be established in a European Union member nation.
PA President Mahmoud Abbas will meet with Pope Francis on Saturday. This will be the third time the two have met. When they met last year, Pope Francis referred to Abbas as “an angel of peace‘. When confronted, the Holy See explained that this was an error in translation and the Pope had atually intended to encourage Abbas to make peace with the Israelis. As head of the PA, Abbas has been accused of inciting violence against Jews. Abbas is also the chairman of the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) which was recognized by Israel and the US as a terror organization until 1991.
The Palestinian representative office in Vatican is one of 98 Palestinian diplomatic and consular representations abroad. The Palestinian representative office is one of 86 foreign representations in the Holy See (Vatican City), and one of 86 foreign representations in Vatican City. Israel does have an embassy in Vatican City, but the Vatican Embassy in Israel is in Tel Aviv. The Vatican has an embassy to Palestine located in East Jerusalem.
The Vatican officially recognized a Palestinian State almost two years ago.