Palestinians to open embassy in Sweden as Abbas visits

Prime Minister of Sweden Stefan Loefven (R) and Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas hold a joint press conference in Stockholm on February 10, 2015. (Photo credit: AFP PHOTO/JONATHAN NACKSTRAND)

STOCKHOLM, Sweden — Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas arrived in Stockholm as the Nordic state readied to open the first Palestinian embassy in Western Europe Tuesday evening.

Abbas, who is visiting Sweden for the first time since it became the first European country to recognize Palestine in October, called on other countries to follow Stockholm’s lead, and said unilateral statehood efforts for serve peace talks, not replace them.

Abbas said the Palestinian leadership was “looking forward” to resuming peace negotiations with Israel, according to Palestinian news agency WAFA.

“We are extending our hands to a just peace based on the international legitimacy resolutions,” he said during a press conference together with Sweden’s Prime Minister, Stefan Lofven.

Lovfen said with statehood, the Palestinians would now be held to different standards.

“According to our view, Palestine is from now on a state. Therefore our expectations from Palestine and its leaders are going to grow,” Löfven said.

Löfven announced Krona 1.5 billion ($180 million) in increased aid to the Palestinians, to be given in installments until 2019 and which will be dedicated to fighting corruption, advancing human rights and gender equality…

Dream on, fools.