PA Statehood Bid Set for September 20
The Palestinian Authority statehood bid will be presented to the United Nations on September 20, PA Foreign Minister Riyad Al-Malki told AFP on Saturday.
"Palestinian president Mahmoud Abbas will personally present the request to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon at the opening of the sixty-sixth session (Sept 20)," Malki said.
Abbas “will insist on this historic initiative and Ban Ki-moon will present the request to the Security Council,” he added.
Malki said PA officials chose September because Lebanon, which will hold the presidency of the Security Council, would be in a strong position to push the bid forward.
“Lebanon will hold the presidency of the Security Council in September and this will help us because the president of the council has special prerogatives, which is crucial,” he said.
The bid comes despite strong doubts over PA readiness for statehood due to fiscal insolvency, corruption, its inability to form a unity government, and concerns over the inclusion of the Hamas terror organization in its ranks.
Last month, a routine Security Council debate on the Middle East became Israel and the PA's dress rehearsal for September's General Assembly conference where the PA will seek UN recognition.
PA observer Riyad Mansour called on the UN to recognize a PA state. "It's time to end the occupation," he said.
Israel's government has said unilateral moves by the PA will be met with a 'diplomatic eye for an eye.'