The Palestinians had hoped to count on growing international support for gaining statehood recognition at the UN outside of the framework of peace negotiations. But a top UN official undercut that strategy last week when he said there was no way a Palestinian state could become a member of the UN without a recommendation from the Security Council. That is unlikely because Obama has hinted strongly that the U.S. would exercise its veto power to block such a move.
On Saturday, a senior Palestinian official said Abbas has concluded that a statehood push at the UN would not advance the Palestinians’ cause. Abbas’ initiative, he said, will be compromised by the fact that the Palestinians first have to seek support from the Security Council before going to the General Assembly. The Palestinian leadership has concluded that the most they could wrest from the UN General Assembly would be a non-binding affirmation of previous resolutions stating that the Palestinians have the right to a state, he added.
However, the official said the Palestine Liberation Organization, which Abbas heads, intends to go ahead with its plan to approach the UN in order to save face among the Palestinian people.
(Mohammed Daraghmeh – AP – San Francisco Chronicle)