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U.N. recognizes Palestinian center amid Israeli anger

Israel says the London-based Palestinian Return Center is affiliated with Hamas and supports terrorism

Published: Updated:

The United Nations has approved U.N. accreditation for the London-based Palestinian Return Center in a defeat for Israel which claims the organization is affiliated with Hamas and “openly promotes terrorism.”

The center, which says it researches and monitors “issues related to dispersed Palestinians and their right to return,” has denied the Israeli allegations.

Last month, the U.N. committee that accredits non-governmental organizations, or NGOs, recommended that the center’s application be approved.

But Israel circulated a resolution, co-sponsored by the United States, Australia and Canada, to the committee’s parent body, the 54-member Economic and Social Council, opposing the application.

In Monday’s vote, 13 countries supported Israel’s resolution, 16 were opposed and 18 abstained, which meant the resolution was defeated and the application was approved.