Palestinian minister delivers UN membership requests

Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Malki said Wednesday he has delivered requests for membership of several UN agencies, as part of a move that shook a fragile Middle East peace process.


"I presented the letters signed by (Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud) Abbas this morning to UN special envoy Robert Serry, as well as to the representatives of the Netherlands and Switzerland," said Malki.


He said the Palestinians had begun the "technical process" required to obtain membership of some 15 international conventions and covenants, including the Fourth Geneva Convention.


"This action does not detract from the importance of negotiations. We are still committed to these talks," he said. (AP)