News / Middle East

Analysts: Palestinian UN Bid Likely to Fail

Palestinians take part in a candle light rally outside the Church of the Nativity, in the West Bank town of Bethlehem, to show support for the Palestinian bid for full United Nations membership, September 15, 2011.
Palestinians take part in a candle light rally outside the Church of the Nativity, in the West Bank town of Bethlehem, to show support for the Palestinian bid for full United Nations membership, September 15, 2011.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas says he will seek full membership to the United Nations next week. Analysts say the effort is unlikely to succeed and will likely set back the Palestinians efforts for statehood.

To be accepted as a full United Nations member,  Palestinians will face a Security Council vote.

Analysts say Abbas’ bid is bound to fail, because the United States has made clear it will veto any attempt at Palestinian statehood through the Security Council.  Washington believes the only way to achieve peace in the Middle East is through direct talks between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.

Message to U.S.

Khaled Elgindy, a former adviser to the Palestinian leadership on negotiations with Israel, says by going to the Security Council, the Palestinians are sending a message to the United States.

“It’s a message, really, of a lack of confidence in American management of the peace process," said Elgindy. "And that they are unhappy with the way things have gone and that the United States, really, hasn’t come up with an alternative strategy, an alternative approach. They [the U.S.] have made clear that they are opposed to the U.N. bid and that they would veto it, but they haven’t come up really with a viable alternative to it.”

Elgindy says a U.S. veto will undercut Washington’s standing in the region. “. . . and at a moment when, it is a very sensitive moment in the history of the region given the turmoil, the changes that are happening next door in Egypt and around them - in Syria and elsewhere - the United States’ standing right now in the region is very, very low and this would only add to that,” he said.

But John Bolton, former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, does not believe a U.S. veto would lower Washington’s standing in the Arab world.

“No, I don’t think so. I think the Arab world fully understands where the U.S. is. They may not like it, but it wouldn’t be a surprise if the U.S. did cast a veto in the Security Council,” he said.

Arab Spring fever


Many analysts are asking why Abbas would press the statehood issue at the Security Council now.

Khaled Elgindy says one reason has to do with the lack of progress in the peace process. Palestinians and Israelis have been deadlocked for months over the possible resumption of talks.

“And then, I think, propelling things further, or giving it greater urgency, is the Arab Spring, this kind of revolutionary fervor that is spreading around the region. And so the Palestinian leadership is under a lot of pressure to show some results for their - not one or two or three years of peace-processing - but really almost two decades now - and they have nothing to show for this approach,” said Elgindy.

Bolton says the peace process will be difficult to revive. “It’s dead in the water," he said. "And I suspect that’s part of the reason, in Abbas’ mind, why he wants to proceed with something in the United Nations. But honestly, that doesn’t make the peace process any easier, I think it makes it more difficult.”

Analysts say if, as expected, the U.S. casts a veto at the Security Council, the Palestinians could take their statehood request to the General Assembly.

But experts say if their move is accepted, they will not get full member status - they will only upgrade their current observer standing.

You May Like

Video Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?

There is growing uncertainty over whether West’s response to ISIS is adequate More

China Crackdown on Dual Citizens Causes Concern

New policy encourages reporting people who obtain citizenship in another country, but retain Chinese citizenship; move spurs sharp debate More

Video Coalition to Fight Islamic State Could Reward Assad

Losing ground to Islamic State fighters, Syria's government says it is ready to cooperate with international community More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?i
X
Henry Ridgwell
August 29, 2014 12:26 AM
U.S. President Barack Obama has ruled out sending ground troops to Iraq to fight militants of the so-called Islamic State, or ISIS, despite officials in Washington describing the extremist group as the biggest threat the United States has faced in years. Henry Ridgwell reports from London on the growing uncertainty over whether the West’s response to ISIS will be enough to defeat the terrorist threat.
Video

Video Is West Doing Enough to Tackle Islamic State?

U.S. President Barack Obama has ruled out sending ground troops to Iraq to fight militants of the so-called Islamic State, or ISIS, despite officials in Washington describing the extremist group as the biggest threat the United States has faced in years. Henry Ridgwell reports from London on the growing uncertainty over whether the West’s response to ISIS will be enough to defeat the terrorist threat.
Video

Video Pachyderms Play Polo to Raise Money for Elephants

Polo, the ancient team competition typically played on horseback, is known as the “sport of kings.” However, the royal version for one annual event in Thailand swaps the horse for the kingdom’s national symbol - the elephant. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman in Samut Prakan reports that the King’s Cup Elephant Polo tournament is all for a good cause.
Video

Video Coalition to Fight Islamic State Could Reward Assad

The United States along with European and Mideast allies are considering a broader assault against Islamic State fighters who have spread from Syria into Iraq and risk further destabilizing an already troubled region. But as VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports, confronting those militants could end up helping the embattled Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.
Video

Video Made in America Socks Get Toehold in Online Fashion Market

Three young entrepreneurs are hoping to revolutionize the high-end sock industry by introducing all-American creations of their own. And they’re doing most of it the old-fashioned way. VOA’s Julie Taboh recently caught up with them to learn what goes into making their one-of-a-kind socks.
Video

Video Americans, Ex-Pats Send Relief Supplies to West Africa

Health organizations from around the world are sending supplies and specialists to the West African countries that are dealing with the worst Ebola outbreak in history. On a smaller scale, ordinary Americans and African expatriates living in the United States are doing the same. VOA's Carol Pearson reports.
Video

Video America's Most Popular Artworks Displayed in Public Places

Public places in cities across America were turned into open-air art galleries in August. Pictures of the nation’s most popular artworks were displayed on billboards, bus shelters, subway platforms and more. The idea behind “Art Everywhere,” a collaborative campaign by five major museums is to allow more people to enjoy art and learn about the country’s culture and history. Faiza Elmasry has more.
Video

Video Chinese Doctors Use 3-D Spinal Implant

A Chinese boy suffering from a debilitating bone disease has become the first patient with a part of his spine created in a three-dimensional printer. Doctors say he will soon regain normal mobility. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Uneasy Calm Settles Over Israel, Gaza Strip

Israel and the Gaza Strip have been calm since a cease-fire set in Tuesday evening, ending seven weeks of hostilities. Hamas, which controls Gaza, declared victory. Israelis were more wart. VOA’s Scott Bobb reports from Jerusalem.
Video

Video India’s Leprosy Battle Stymied by Continuing Stigma

Medical advancements in the treatment of leprosy have greatly diminished its impact around the world, largely eliminating the disease from most countries. India made great strides in combating leprosy, but still accounts for a majority of the world’s new cases each year, and the number of newly infected Indians is rising - more than 130,000 recorded last year. Doctors there say the problem has more to do with society than science. Shaikh Azizur Rahman reports from Kolkata.
Video

Video Scientists Unlock Mystery of Bird Flocks

How can flocks of birds, schools of fish or herds of antelope suddenly change direction -- all the individuals adjusting their movement in concert, at seemingly the same time? British researchers now have some insights into this behavior, which has puzzled scientists for a long time. VOA's George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid