Despite heavy diplomatic pressure exerted in recent days by the Israel’s National Security Council, Foreign Ministry and Ministry for Strategic Affairs, the Palestinian Authority (PA) on Wednesday was officially accepted by the world policing organization Interpol, currently meeting in Beijing, China, Israel’s Channel 2 reported. 75 countries in the organization’s plenum voted for the proposal, while only 24 states opposed it.
The most serious meaning of the PA’s acceptance is that they will now be receiving sensitive information related to the war on terror. The PA will also be able to issue arrest warrants against IDF officers which would lead to their arrest abroad and extradition to the PA. For all intents and purposes, the status of the Palestinian Authority security force will be identical to that of the Israel Police.
The debate in the plenum was delayed by claims from several countries, including Israel, about irregularities in registering the results of the vote on the criteria for receiving new members into Interpol. Eventually the vote was held, and the PA won the needed majority and then some.
PA Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki celebrated the vote as a “victory” and vowed that the “State of Palestine” would continue to seek membership in world bodies.
“The State of Palestine will continue to struggle to raise the status and role of Palestine at the international level and defend the rights of our people in security and freedom by all diplomatic and legal means available and including joining the relevant international institutions,” he said.
Human rights groups have argued against letting China host the annual gathering of the global police force, citing Beijing’s misuse of Interpol’s “red notice” arrest warrant system to arrest fugitive ex-officials and business people wanted for corruption, as well as political dissidents such as German-based activist Dolkun Isa.