Home > Middle East (Bariga Dhexe), POLITICS > Palestine “more determined than ever” to gain UN statehood recognition: envoy

Palestine “more determined than ever” to gain UN statehood recognition: envoy

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Laaska News  Nov. 12,2011

UNITED NATIONS, Nov. 11 (Xinhua) — Riyad Mansour, the permanent observer of Palestine to the United Nations, said here Friday that the Palestinians will continue to work towards getting recognized as a UN member state through the UN Security Council.

“We have collectively to do more work and we are more determined than ever to continue with this exercise until the conditions in the Security Council are right for Palestine to become a member state,” Mansour said.

The Palestinian permanent observer’s statement came as he addressed reporters outside of the Security Council chamber. The council’s committee on the admissions of new states had just met and forwarded a report on the status of Palestine’s bid to the Security Council.

“We are very grateful for all those and many members of the Security Council who have expressed support and willingness and readiness to accept and to recommend from the Security Council to the (UN) General Assembly for Palestine to join its rightful place in the community of nations as a member,” said Mansour.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas submitted Palestine’s bid for UN statehood on Sept. 23. Before proceeding to a vote of all member states in the General Assembly, the bid must be approved by the Security Council, where it faces an obstacle in the form of the United States — a veto-wielding permanent council member and close Israeli ally that has indicated that it will reject the bid.

“We thought that with diligent diplomatic efforts, with success at UNESCO (UN Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization) of being admitted in the UN system as the state of Palestine, and with the collective approach to all of us that the conditions that existed 50 days ago could perhaps change through discourse and that Palestine would be admitted as a member state,” said Mansour. “Unfortunately, this is not the reality today.”

Members of UNESCO voted to admit Palestine as a state on Oct. 31 which resulted in the U.S. freezing its funding of the UN cultural agency.

Mansour explained that although Palestine has not yet succeeded in getting statehood recognition from the UN as a whole, its accomplishments at UNESCO, as well as the stated support from many countries, including upgraded status in several European states, has made the exercise worthwhile.

However, he said, Palestine deserves full statehood.

“So we will intensify our efforts with our friends in order to accomplish that objective and we hope we can do it soon because the Security Council will remain engaged with our application until we prevail and until we succeed,” he said.

According to Mansour, the Palestinian leadership will now examine closely the report of the Security Council admissions committee.

“Now this report is in the hands of the Palestinian leadership and our brothers the Arab leaders, and our friends,” he said. “We will be studying this report and the whole exercise thoroughly and quickly and we will make a determination very quickly as to the next step forward in the UN system.”

Admission to the United Nations as a full member state requires a recommendation from the Security Council, with a majority of nine votes in favor and no veto from the five permanent members, which includes Britain, China, France, Russia and the United States.

A submission would then go to the 193-member UN General Assembly, where approval would require a two-thirds votes in favor.

The United States, the veto-wielding council member and a close ally of Israel, threatens to veto the Palestinian bid on the ground that the Palestinian statehood should emerge from negotiations with Israel, not from acts by third parties or international groups.

On Oct. 31, Palestine became the 195th full member of UNESCO. The UNESCO vote, which was 107 to 14, with 5 abstentions, defied a mandated cutoff of American funds under the U.S. federal legislation from the 1990s.

UNESCO Director General Irina Bokova told the UNESCO General Conference in Paris on Thursday that the UN cultural agency has temporarily suspended new programs in response to the U.S. decision to cut off funding due to the admission of Palestine as a full member.

The United States contributes 22 percent of the financial resources of the UN agency.

Xinhua.
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