Palestinian President Reiterates Bid For UN Upgraded Status

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas Has High Hopes For UN Bid

Ramallah, West Bank — Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas has high hopes for a United Nations bid for observer status, believing that the status bid is the first step toward achieving the rights Palestinian people deserve.

Abbas added that the proposal has wide support among General Assembly members, reports Bloomberg BusinessWeek. Abbas stated on Monday in Ramallah:

“We are going to the United Nations with confidence, supported by all peace lovers. Be assured, there are many countries [supporting the bid].”

President Abbas has control over the West Bank and is pressing ahead with an initiative to grant Palestinian’s observer status in the UN’s General Assembly, despite pressure from the US, Israel, and others. The move comes days after Egypt brokered a cease-fire agreement between Hamas and Israel.

Hamas is the Palestinian Authority’s rival, which currently runs the Gaza Strip. Hamas has given its support to the Palestinian Authority for the UN bid, which Abbas will likely make before the end of the month. The PA president hopes that the bid will help reconcile the two factions. The US, European Union, and Israel consider Hamas a terrorist organization.

Al Arabiya notes that Palestinians are currently considered an observer “entity” at the United Nations. If the bid succeeds, they would in essence be granted statehood, because their bid requests them to be upgraded to a non-member state.

The upgrade would also allow the Palestinians to access bodies like the International Criminal Court in The Hague. It is expected that, should they be granted the upgraded status, they would likely bring in complaints against Israel to the ICC.

The United States continues to oppose the move by the Palestinians, calling them instead to go back to the peace talk table with Israel. US State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland stated on Monday:

“We continue to try to dissuade the Palestinians from taking this action. We think it’s going to be complicating and potentially a step backwards in terms of the larger goal, which is a negotiated solution.”

Do you think that the Palestinians should be given “non-member state” status in the UN, or should they discontinue their bid attempt?