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  • mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato

    » 08/31/2011, 00.00


    Israel’s increasingly bitter war against Palestinian seat in UN

    Joshua Lapide

    According to Israel, the recognition of the UN seat "is a more serious threat than Hamas”. Threats and pressure: taxes paid late and threats of cuts in aid to the Palestinians and the UN; Peres banned from going to New York. The Palestinians have succeeded in gaining recognition from at least 120 countries.
    Jerusalem (AsiaNews) - Threats, warnings, slashing of funds, late payments and even the banning Shimon Peres from attending the UN: these are the means by which the State of Israel is trying to block the Palestinian Authority (PA) request for a seat in the UN as a full member or at least non-member State.

    Next September 20 Palestinians will ask UN secretary-general, Ban Ki-moon, to recognize Palestine as a member of the international organization, and as a state whose borders are those of 1967. With a huge diplomatic effort that has lasted for months, the Palestinians are now able to count on the support of at least 120 countries, which recognize the 1967 borders of Palestine (ie including the occupied territories and East Jerusalem). Yesterday, recognition came from St. Vincent and Grenadine; last week Honduras and El Salvador. China also said they would vote for Palestine as an independent state.

    The decision of the PA to seek UN recognition comes after the complete deadlock in peace talks, frozen because Israel continues to allow new settlements in the occupied territories and East Jerusalem and the expansion of those already existing, thus eroding the geographical space for a possible Palestinian state.

    Yesterday in Haaretz published excerpts of a message (secret) from Ron Prosor, Israel's ambassador to the UN, to the Foreign Ministry. In it, Prosor fears that only a few nations "will vote against the Palestinian initiative."

    Faced with the risk of a failure of to block international recognition of a Palestinian state Israel has stepped up the tone and seriousness of its threats.

    Youval Steinitz, the Israeli Minister of Finance, said today that "this initiative of the Palestinians is a more serious threat than that of Hamas in Gaza." Hamas, the Islamist armed movement, which controls the Gaza Strip, has reconciled with Fatah months ago.

    In retaliation, Steinitz has refused to anticipate the payment of monthly funds to the PA, with which it was to have paid the salaries of its employees before the festival of Eid.

    After the Oslo Accords (1993), Israel, pays the PA the taxes it collects on its behalf on goods passing through Israeli ports and airports. These funds - more than 700 million euros a year - are about two-thirds of the annual budget of the PA. Even last May, after the reconciliation between Hamas and Fatah, Steinitz - who belongs to the Likud Party - delayed payments.

    Uzi Landau, minister of infrastructure, threatened that faced with the Palestinian attempt, "... our agreements will be null and void." The minister, a member of an extremist nationalist party of Avigdor Lieberman, said that "we will impose our sovereignty over areas of the territories [occupied] ... and that is the Jordan Valley and major settlement blocs."

    To avoid any support to the Palestinians, Prime Minister Netanyahu Benjiamin has already stated that he will not travel to attend the UN General Assembly. Today, Haaretz published statements by pro-Israeli diplomats in New York who advised him not to send even the Israeli President, Shimon Peres, considered "too pro-Palestinian."

    The PA will present its request for a Palestinian seat next September 20. The Palestinians can submit their request directly to the Assembly. In this case, Palestine would be accepted, but as a non-member State and the vote could take place as early as October 25.
    To become a full member the UN Security Council must approve the move where the United States almost certainly will use its veto.

    Until now, Obama has held a contradictory attitude: on the one hand, he wants the recognition of a Palestinian state "within the 1967 borders ", on the other has already warned the PA from taking "unilateral actions" such as a UN recognition'.

    On the ground in the U.S. attitude is becoming increasingly harsh. Days ago, Daniel Rubinstein, the U.S. Consulate General in Jerusalem, met Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erakat in Jericho and threatened to cut U.S. aid funds to the PA if it persists in its plan.

    As if to threaten even more serous action, U.S. Republican lawmaker Ileana Ros-Lehtinen said on Tuesday she would propose a decree (already supported by 57 representatives) to cut UN funds to any organization that supports the PA request.

    For his part, Mahmoud Abbas, president of the PA, said that he would stop the request for a UN seat only if Israel stops building and expanding settlements, and recognizes the 1967 borders as a basis for negotiations. "Without it - he said - we will continue our quest at the United Nations."

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    See also

    20/05/2011 ISRAEL - PALESTINE
    In response to Obama Israel approves 1520 new settlements in East Jerusalem
    New colonies announced only hours ahead of the meeting between Netanyahu and Barak Obama. Criticism from Abbas and Israeli organizations like "Peace Now". Increasingly difficult to build a Palestinian state with east Jerusalem as its capital.

    27/07/2007 PALESTINE – ISRAEL
    Peace in a year and Jerusalem as the capital of the two states, proposes Abbas
    Palestinian Prime Minister Fayad’s plan includes two states within the 1967 borders with Jerusalem as the shared capital. Abbas believes Bush means it when he says that he wants a solution before he leaves office in 2009. Dahlah, Fatah strongman in Gaza, resigns.

    18/05/2011 PALESTINE – ISRAEL
    Mahmoud Abbas: At last, a Palestinian state after 60 years
    In an article on the New York Times, the PLO chairman explains the steps needed for a Palestinian state to be born, through diplomatic recognition and UN membership. For 20 years, dialogue with Israel has proven fruitless, bringing only more settlements in the Occupied Territories. In his op-ed, the Palestinian leader appeals to the nations of the world to ensure hope and peace for the Palestinian people.

    05/08/2011 PALESTINE – ISRAEL
    UN recognition of Palestine backed by Arab League, feared by Israel
    In Doha, Jordan, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Morocco, Lebanon and Qatar agreed yesterday to the initiative. Palestinian authorities tell Israel and the world that their demand is non-violent. Marches are planned in Palestinian cities to coincide with next month’s UN General Assembly.

    23/11/2012 ISRAEL - PALESTINE
    Israel, instrumental in Hamas's victory and Mahmoud Abbas's defeat, says Israeli activist
    Israel's goal in its "Pillar of Defence' operation was to undermine Abbas's UN request. Everyone appears to agree on this: Israel, Hamas, Egypt and the United States. The great former statesman now peace activist suggests steps to take to achieve coexistence: direct dialogue with Hamas and support for a Palestinian seat at the UN. Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman has other plans: colonising the West Bank and let Gaza be.

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