Palestinians want vote on UN membership in April, while US says peace with Israel must come first


United Nations (AP) — Palestinians want the Security Council to vote on their revived request for full membership in the United Nations later this month, despite the United States reiterating Wednesday that Israel and the Palestinians must first negotiate a peace deal. Should do.

During the Cold War between the former Soviet Union and the United States, countries were barred from joining the United Nations, Mansour said, but they all eventually became members, including North Korea. The US does not recognize North Korea, he said, but has not barred its entry and asked why conditions should be imposed on Palestinian membership.

That effort failed because the Palestinians failed to get the necessary support of nine of the 15 members of the Security Council. Even if they had done so, the United States, Israel’s closest ally, had promised to veto any council resolution supporting Palestinian membership at the time, saying it would be necessary to ensure negotiations between Israel and the Palestinians. The peace agreement should be followed.

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The Palestinians then went to the 193-member General Assembly, where there is no veto, and by a more than two-thirds majority succeeded in raising their status from UN observer to non-member observer state in November 2012.

Mansour on Tuesday asked the Security Council to consider the Palestinians’ renewed application for membership during April, which was supported by the 22-nation Arab Group, the 57-nation Organization of Islamic Cooperation and the 120-member Non-Aligned Movement. . ,

He told several journalists on Wednesday that he expected the council’s Standing Committee on New Members, which includes all 15 council countries, to consider the application behind closed doors before the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan on April 9. Will hold a meeting.

Mansour said he expected the Security Council to vote on the Palestinian request for full UN membership at its monthly ministerial meeting on the Middle East on April 18.

Seven of the 15 council members recognize the State of Palestine – China, Russia, Ecuador, Mozambique, Algeria, Guyana and Sierra Leone.

US State Department spokesman Matthew Miller was asked on Wednesday whether the United States would veto full membership for the Palestinians. He replied, “I’m not going to speculate about what might happen in the future.”

He said there has been intense diplomacy over the past few months to establish a Palestinian state with security guarantees for Israel, which the United States supports. But Miller said this should be done through direct Palestinian-Israeli negotiations, “something we are doing right now, not at the United Nations.”

US Deputy Ambassador Robert Wood pointed to another hurdle: the US Congress has adopted legislation “which in essence says that if the Security Council approves full membership for the Palestinians outside a bilateral agreement between Israel and the Palestinians.. .(US) funding will be cut to the UN system.”

“We are bound by American laws,” he told multiple reporters on Wednesday. “So our hope is that they won’t do that, but it’s up to them.”

Palestinian Ambassador Mansour said that achieving full UN membership is the Palestinians’ “natural and legal right” and declared, “Let the process move forward.”

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