Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas
Photo: EPA

Palestinians to push for UN membership Nov. 11

PA is making final efforts to gain support for its UN bid ahead of Security Council vote; Ramallah reportedly to ask Hamas to hold elections

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas intends to ask Hamas to hold elections in the Palestinian Authority in January, Abbas' spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeina said on Thursday.


In an interview with Time Magazine, Abu Rudeina said that Abbas and Hamas Politburo Chief Khaled Mashaal are scheduled to meet in the beginning of November to discuss the proposal.


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Meanwhile, Palestinian diplomats are trying to muster support for a UN Security Council vote in New York on November 11 on their bid for membership in the global body.


UN diplomats said earlier this week that a Security Council committee considering the membership bid would deliver a report on that day, and that ambassadors would then decide on the next steps. 


A hero's welcome. Abbas in Ramallah (Photo: AFP)


Palestinians and their allies would need to get the backing of nine of the Security Council's 15 members to request a vote, the same number required to approve a resolution. But the Security Council's five permanent members – Britain, China, France, Russia and the US – each have veto power.


The US, Israel's closest ally, has pledged to use its veto if a majority back Palestinian membership.


"We still have time until November 11, so there is a lot of efforts pushing certain countries to voting in favor," Palestinian envoy to the UN in Geneva, Ibrahim Khraishi, told AP.

Khraishi said "several parties are working" to secure the votes, but declined to elaborate. "Personally, I think that we will succeed to get the nine," he added. 
  • For full coverage of PA's statehood bid click here


Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas delivered the Palestinian application on September 23. Hours later, the Quartet of Mideast mediators – the US, UN, EU and Russia – called for a resumption of Israeli-Palestinian negotiations in a month, with the goal of a peace agreement by the end of 2012.


The Israelis and Palestinians are scheduled to meet separately with the Quartet on Tuesday.


Also on Thursday, the UN investigator for the Palestinian territories has urged increased protection for children in those areas, and better guidelines for minors arrested by Israeli military officials.


Richard Falk, the UN special rapporteur for the territories, told the General Assembly Thursday that "long-term occupation" has dramatic effects on the health and well-being of children.


The American professor emeritus of international law at Princeton University said he's especially concerned about reports of violence against Palestinian children during arrest and detention procedures by Israeli military authorities.


Falk noted the number of minors held has risen in recent years mostly because of allegations of stone-throwing.




פרסום ראשון: 10.20.11, 23:21
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