Speaking to the Congress Executive Council and members of the Global Solidarity Committee, Mr Ahmad Abdelrazek said Palestinians needed “political support in a practical way.”

He said there were two key issues on which support was required: official recognition of the state of Palestine and on the illegal settlements.

Mr Abdelrazek told Executive members that in 1993 there were just 135 ‘settlers’ in Palestine. “Now there 700,000 and they are a major obstacle” to resolving the conflict.

In relation to the Boycott, Divestment & Sanctions (BDS) campaign, Mr Abdelrazek explained that the aim of boycotting goods produced in the illegal settlements was to “cost the Israeli taxpayer money and to force them to question the existence and purpose of the settlements.”

He said the key priority for Palestinians was recognition of their state, but was conscious of “outside pressures” on Europe. Given the recent US decision on moving its embassy to Jerusalem, Mr Abdelrazek said “we don’t accept (the) mediation of only the United States, we don’t trust the US any more.”

Ambassador Abdelrazek thanked Congress and the trade union movement for their support over the years