News / Middle East

Palestinian UN Bid Goes to Committee

People attend a public screening of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' speech to the U.N. in Ramallah , Sept. 23, 2011.
People attend a public screening of Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' speech to the U.N. in Ramallah , Sept. 23, 2011.
TEXT SIZE - +
Margaret Besheer

The United Nations Security Council took its first official step Wednesday toward considering the Palestinian application for full U.N. membership, passing it to a special committee that will review it and make recommendations.

The standing committee on new members is tasked with deciding whether the territory known as Palestine meets the criteria for statehood, including possession of a defined territory and a recognized government. Under the U.N. Charter, a new member must also be “peace-loving.”

The committee will take up its work at the ambassador level on Friday morning and report its conclusions to the Security Council. The council will then decide whether to make a recommendation to the General Assembly via resolution.

A decision is not likely for weeks, but analysts say the bid is bound to fail because the United States has threatened to use Washington's veto power on the Security Council to block it.

After Wednesday's action, the Palestinian envoy, Riyad Mansour, told reporters the process is moving forward.

"We hope the Security Council [will] shoulder its responsibility and approve our application and send a recommendation to the General Assembly for the admission of Palestine to the United Nations," he said.

Last week, on the margins of the U.N. General Assembly, the Middle East Quartet - made up of the United States, Russia, the European Union and the United Nations - issued a call for the Palestinians and Israel to return to direct negotiations. Those talks broke down last September after Israel allowed a moratorium on settlement construction to expire.

On Tuesday, Israel announced that it would build 1,100 new homes for Israelis on annexed land in East Jerusalem that Palestinians want as part of a future state. Mansour called the action a clear answer from the Israeli government about negotiations.

"They gave 1,100 answers of saying 'no' to the effort of the international community of opening doors for negotiations," he said. "I think this speaks clearly that Israel is not interested in negotiating with us, in spite of the fact that they say they like to do so."

Mansour said Israel's construction plans violate tenets of prior negotiations and international law. "Those who are interested in peace and negotiation would abide by their obligation under the Road Map which calls for freeze of settlements," he said. "They would abide by international law which says that settlements are illegal."

Israel's U.N. Ambassador Ron Prosor said there are no short-cuts to a Palestinian state.

"I would like to emphasize that a Palestinian state - a real Palestinian state, a viable Palestinian state - will not be achieved in imposing things from the outside, but only in direct negotiations," he said, pointing to successful peace agreements between Israel with Egypt and Jordan.

“We can do it ourselves [and] we can do it by talking to each other," he said. "We know the problems; we know how tough this is. There are no shortcuts. There are no instant solutions here."

Both ambassadors said their governments would consider and respond to the Quartet stance, which calls both sides back to talks within one month and lays out a timeline for resolving outstanding issues by the end of next year.

You May Like

Algerians Vote in Presidential Election

There were few media reports of protests and clashes around the country, but so far no significant violence More

Sharks More Evolved than Previously Thought

The discovery could “profoundly affect our understanding of evolutionary history” More

Pakistan Military Asked to Protect Polio Workers

Request comes as authorities say a Taliban ban on vaccinations in 2012 and deadly attacks on anti-polio teams have prevented thousands of children from getting inoculated 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.
Google Buys Drone Companyi
|| 0:00:00
...
 
🔇
X
George Putic
April 15, 2014
In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Ray Bonneville Sings the Blues and More on New CD

Singer/songwriter Ray Bonneville has released a new CD called “Easy Gone” with music that reflects his musical and personal journey from French-speaking Canada to his current home in Austin,Texas. The eclectic artist’s fan base extends from Texas to various parts of North America and Europe. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Austin.
Video

Video Millions Labor in Pakistan's Informal Economy

The World Bank says that in Pakistan, roughly 70 percent work in the so-called informal sector, a part of the economy that is unregulated and untaxed. VOA's Sharon Behn reports from Islamabad on how the informal sector impact's the Pakistani economy.
Video

Video Passover Celebrates Liberation from Bondage

Jewish people around the world are celebrating Passover, a commemoration of their liberation from slavery in Egypt more than 3,300 years ago. According to scripture, God helped the Jews, led by Moses, escape bondage in Egypt and cross the Red Sea into the desert. Zlatica Hoke reports that the story of the Jewish Exodus resonates with other people trying to escape slave-like conditions.
Video

Video Police Pursue Hate Crime Charges Against Kansas Shooting Suspect

Prosecutors are sifting through the evidence in the wake of Sunday’s shootings in a suburb of Kansas City, Missouri that left three people dead. A suspect in the shootings taken into custody is a white supremacist. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, he was well-known to law enforcement agencies and human rights groups alike.
Video

Video In Eastern Ukraine, Pro-unity Activists Emerge from Shadows

Amid the pro-Russian uprisings in eastern Ukraine, there is a large body of activists who support Ukrainian unity and reject Russian intervention. Their activities have remained largely underground, but they are preparing to take on their pro-Moscow opponents, as Henry Ridgwell reports from the eastern city of Donetsk.
Video

Video Basket Maker’s Skills Have World Reach

A prestigious craft show in the U.S. capital offers one-of-a-kind creations by more than 120 artists working in a variety of media. As VOA’s Julie Taboh reports from Washington, one artist lucky enough to be selected says sharing her skills with women overseas is just as significant.
Video

Video UN Report Urges Speedier Action to Avoid Climate Disaster

A new United Nations report says the world must switch from fossil fuels to cleaner energy sources to control the effects of climate change. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released the report (Sunday) following a meeting of scientists and government representatives in Berlin. The comprehensive review follows two recent IPCC reports that detail the certainty of climate change, its impacts and in this most recent report what to do about it. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble has the details.
AppleAndroid