PA Toughens Language in UN Resolution

Palestinian Authority presents a more toughly-worded UN draft resolution on statehood, but a date on the vote is yet to be determined.

Elad Benari,

UN Security Council
UN Security Council
Reuters

The Palestinian Authority’s envoys presented on Monday a more toughly-worded United Nations (UN) draft resolution on statehood that could come up for a vote at the Security Council this week, AFP reports.

Arab ambassadors met at UN headquarters for about two hours to endorse the text that contains new provisions on declaring eastern Jerusalem the capital of a Palestinian state, settling the issue of prisoner releases and halting Israeli construction in Judea, Samaria and Jerusalem.

But a final decision on the timing for a vote on the draft resolution at the Security Council rests with PA and Jordanian leaders.

"Both our leaderships will be discussing, to find the best way and the best timing to vote on the Security Council resolution," Jordanian Ambassador Dina Kawar was quoted as having told reporters.

"Realistically, it could happen tomorrow," added PA envoy Riyad Mansour.

The draft resolution was formally presented to the council on December 17, but the United States quickly rejected the text over Palestinian insistence that deadlines be set.

The PA said it was open to negotiations on the text and Jordan began talks on a measure that could garner a consensus among the 15 council members.

But the latest push showed that prospects for a resolution that would satisfy both the PA and the United States were bleak.

Discussions on the draft resolution come amid mounting international alarm over the ongoing violence and the failure to re-start negotiations.

It remains unclear if the PA would seek a quick vote or hold off until January 1 when five new members with a pro-Palestinian stance join  the Security Council.

Diplomats said it was unlikely that the resolution would garner nine votes under the current makeup of the council -- a scenario that would allow the United States to avoid resorting to its veto power.

Angola, Malaysia, New Zealand, Spain and Venezuela begin their two-year stint at the council on January 1, replacing Argentina, Australia, Luxembourg, Rwanda and South Korea.

Russia has said it will support the resolution, and while U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry has not publicly stated that Washington would use its veto against the resolution, his spokeswoman recently said the United States will not support the resolution.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Monday called on the international community to oppose the PA’s moves at the UN.

"We expect the international community, at least the responsible members of that community to oppose vigorously this UN diktat, this UN Security Council resolution because what we need always is direct negotiations and not imposed conditions," Netanyahu said during a meeting with Indiana Governor Mike Pence.

"But I want to guarantee you, to you and to the people of Israel: If the international community does not reject the Palestinian Authority's proposal, we will. Israel will oppose conditions that endanger our future," he added.




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