National Security Adviser John Bolton reiterated the position of the United States and several western European countries this week when he said Palestine is not an official state.
Bolton spoke during Wednesday's White House press briefing and referred to Palestine as a "so-called state." When asked a follow-up about the remark, he went further.
"Of course, it's not a state now," Bolton said. "It does not meet the customary international law test of statehood. It doesn't control defined boundaries. It doesn't fulfill the normal functions of government. There are a whole host of reasons why it's not a state.
"It could become a state, as the president said, but that requires diplomatic negotiations with Israel and others."
One hundred thirty-seven United Nations members recognize Palestine as a state. Former Palestine Liberation Organization Chairman Yasser Arafat declared Palestine a state in 1988.
Bolton added his opinion on Palestine is the "position that the United States government has pursued uniformly since 1988.
"We don't recognize it as the state of Palestine. We have consistently, across Democratic and Republican administrations, opposed the admission of Palestine to the United Nations as a state because it's not a state."
Palestine has feuded with Israel over land for decades, which has led to several violent clashes over the years.
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