United Nations Security Council
United Nations Security CouncilReuters

The Palestinian Authority (PA) has submitted to the member states of the UN Security Council a draft resolution calling for an immediate and full halt to the “settlement building in the occupied territories.”

The draft resolution states that “Israeli settlements built on Palestinian lands occupied in 1967 are illegal”, and that “settlements are a major obstacle to the realization of the two-state solution.”

As well, the resolution demands that Israel, as an “occupying power” to immediately end all “settlement activity”, including in eastern Jerusalem, and to respect its legal obligations in this regard.

The resolution also demands that member states of the UN Security Council refrain from offering any assistance to Israel that may be used for “settlements”.

The new resolution is the latest unilateral attempt by the PA to condemn Israel and force a peace agreement on it without direct negotiations.

The PA has in recent years several times initiated similar resolutions at the UN Security Council.

It remains unclear whether the United States will use its veto power against the resolution should it be voted upon before mid-January, when President Barack Obama leaves office.

There have been concerns that Obama, freed of re-election concerns, will advance such resolutions or break with American protocol and refrain from vetoing them if they are voted upon before he leaves office.

The PA has been trying to pressure Obama to break with protocol, having this week sent a delegation to Washington to meet with the President on the matter.

On the other side, a group of 88 senators recently urged Obama to continue to maintain the long-standing U.S. policy of vetoing one-sided UN resolutions on the Israeli-Palestinian Arab issue.