Palestinians may take statehood bid to UN Assembly

Date: 7/8/2011

By Don Emmert | AFP – Fri, Jul 8, 2011

The Palestinians may take their bid for statehood to the UN General Assembly rather than the Security Council, where a US veto is likely, an official said on Friday.

"We will submit our request to the Secretary General, maybe in the last 10 days of July," Palestinian negotiator Mohammed Shtayeh told journalists.

"Our leaders are examining carefully which step we are taking first: the General Assembly first and then secondly the Security Council or the Security Council and then the General Assembly," he said.

Although only the Security Council can admit a new member, by a minimum of nine votes and no veto, Shtayeh said getting the General Assembly's endorsement first could influence the council's decision.

"The General Assembly will make a recommendation, will ask the Security Council to admit Palestine so it's like a pressure mechanism on the Security Council, so it works either way," he said.

Palestinian president Mahmud Abbas has said that without any prospects of a renewal of negotiations with Israel, the Palestinians would definitely pursue their unilateral bid for recognition in September.

While many states have indicated they will support the bid, it faces strong opposition from Israel, the United States and Germany, which say any progress toward a Palestinian state must be made through a negotiated agreement.


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