International group OKs Israeli membership

JERUSALEM (JTA) — An international economic cooperative has approved Israel as a member, despite the Palestinian Authority’s attempt to thwart the move.

Representatives of the 31 member countries of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development on Monday in Paris voted unanimously to accept Israel into the organization. Estonia and Slovenia also were invited to become members.

Israel began the membership process three years ago, the Israeli business daily Globes reported.

An official announcement that Israel has become an OECD member will take place at at the organization’s annual ministerial council meeting in Paris May 26-28.

The Palestinian Authority had sent a letter to OECD countries asking them to postpone Israel’s membership approval. PA.Prime Minister Salem Fayyad also called some of the countries personally, according to reports.

Pro-Palestinian groups planned to protest the vote in front of the OECD headquarters in Paris, according to Globes.

The approval will boost Israel’s credit rating and help the nation to attract foreign investment. 
 

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