Prime Minister Stephen Harper confirms 'no' vote on Palestine at UN

The Canadian Press
Associated Press

OTTAWA - Prime Minister Stephen Harper has confirmed that Canada will vote against a motion to confer statehood on Palestine in a vote set for Thursday at the United Nations.

Harper says Canada favours a two-state solution in the Middle East which requires the Palestinian authority to return to the bargaining table for talks with Israel.

The prime minister says his government will not support any "shortcut," such as giving the Palestinians a declaration of statehood in advance of negotiations.

Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird is travelling to the UN in New York on Thursday to personally cast Canada's vote against the motion.

The UN General Assembly resolution would raise the Palestinians' status from a UN observer to a non-member observer state.

The United States and Israel are strongly opposed to the move.