Americans need to take “every possible step” to prevent President Barack Obama from failing to veto a UN Security Council resolution making Israeli communities in Judea and Samaria illegal, said Professor Anne Bayefsky, Director of the Touro Institute on Human Rights and the Holocaust, and President of Human Rights Voices.
Bayefsky spoke at the recent IAC National Conference in Washington, DC.
If Obama fails to veto such a resolution, she warned, “it could not be reversed no matter who the next president is, because once it's binding in international law, the Russians and the Chinese have a veto and they'll never rescind it.”
“It's contrary to the road map and Oslo, it takes one of the final status issues and decides it without the agreement of the parties, it reverses fundamental U.S. policy that peace will only come from direct negotiations. It's essentially adoption of the BDS by the Security Council,” she continued.
As well, said Bayefsky, such a move would send a direct message to the International Criminal Court that building Israeli “settlements” constitutes war crimes.
The Palestinian Authority (PA) has several times initiated unilateral resolutions at the UN Security Council which seek to condemn Israel over its construction in Judea and Samaria and force a peace settlement on the Jewish state. There have been concerns that Obama, in his final months in office, would support such a resolution.
PA Foreign Minister Riad Malki recently expressed hope that Obama, freed of re-election concerns, would break with American protocol and refrain from vetoing the resolution.
Several weeks ago, a group of 88 senators urged Obama to maintain the long-standing U.S. policy of vetoing one-sided UN resolutions on the Israeli-Palestinian Arab issue.
The letter, initiated by Sens. Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) and Mike Rounds (R-SD), cited Obama's 2011 General Assembly address in which he said, "Peace will not come through statements and resolutions at the United Nations."