General Assembly of the United Nations to Meet in September 2011 to Discuss Palestinian State
UN May Declare Palestine Its Own Sovereign State, Whose Territory Includes All of the West Bank, Gaza and East JerusalemThe Raw Story
April 4, 2011
The United Nations may declare Palestine a sovereign state whose territory includes all of the West Bank, Gaza and East Jerusalem during its annual General Assembly meeting in September.
According to the New York Times, support for a UN resolution to recognize an independent Palestinian state has steadily been growing.
The declaration of Palestine state would put Israel in a bind. If the UN were to pass such a resolution, Israel would be occupying land belonging to a fellow UN member. Israel has been building settlements in the West Bank and Gaza for decades.
Israeli-Palestinian negotiations broke off months ago after Israel refused to halt the construction of further settlements.
"We want to generate pressure on Israel to make it feel isolated and help it understand that there can be no talks without a stop to settlements," Nabil Shaath, leader of the foreign affairs department of Fatah, the main party of the Palestinian Authority, said. "Without that, our goal is membership in the United Nations General Assembly in September."
White House Middle East advisor Dennis Ross said Monday that the United States was opposed to the Palestinian Authority seeking a UN statehood declaration.
"We have consistently made it clear that the way to produce a Palestinian state is through negotiations, not through unilateral declarations, not through going to the UN," Dennis Ross told the Anti-Defamation League’s annual leadership conference. "Our position on that has been consistent in opposition."Ron Prosor urges leaders at closed session of the Conference of Presidents of major Jewish American Organizations to use connections to stop upcoming UN vote.
June 20, 2011
Israel’s new ambassador to the United Nations Ron Prosor urged Jewish American leaders on Monday to form a clear and operational plan ahead of the United Nations vote in September regarding unilateral recognition of a Palestinian state.
During a closed meeting of the Conference of Presidents of major Jewish American Organizations in New York, Prosor said that talk was not enough at such a crucial time, and that the U.S. Jewish community must prepare a clear operational plan.
In an unconventional appeal for unity, the new ambassador, who started serving as Israel’s UN envoy less than a week ago, urged the Jewish leaders to work together despite their differences ahead of the September vote.
Prosor stressed before the Jewish leaders that they must take advantage of the Jewish community’s connections with decision makers in order to get results.
Prosor also said that regardless of the outcome of the UN vote, a Palestinian state will not be created; he added that the UN is not authorized to dictate borders between countries. He stressed that a unilateral recognition of a Palestinian state will bring about another cycle of violence that will only lead to a dead end.
Least week Prosor said that the September vote was at the center of the Israeli delegation’s life.
“The mission regarding the unilateral declaration is one heck of a challenge, but I believe the chances of the declaration to succeed are actually very small. It will only bring things back and take nothing forward; I say that as the director general of the Foreign Ministry during the disengagement from Gaza. Unilateral moves are not constructive,” Prosor said after his first day on the job, emphasizing that there was still time to act before the vote.
April 2, 2011
The Palestinian focus on September stems not only from the fact that the General Assembly holds its annual meeting then. It is also because Prime Minister Salam Fayyad announced in September 2009 that his government would be ready for independent statehood in two years and that Mr. Obama said last September that he expected the framework for an independent Palestinian state to be declared in a year.
Mr. Obama did not indicate what the borders of that state would be, assuming they would be determined through direct negotiations. But with Israeli-Palestinian talks broken off months ago and the Middle East in the process of profound change, many argue that outside pressure is needed.
Germany, France and Britain say negotiations should be based on the 1967 lines with equivalent land swaps, exactly what the Netanyahu government rejects because it says it predetermines the outcome.
“Does the world think it is going to force Israel to declare the 1967 lines and giving up Jerusalem as a basis for negotiation?” asked a top Israeli official who spoke on condition of anonymity. “That will never happen.”
While the Obama administration has referred in the past to the 1967 lines as a basis for talks, it has not decided whether to back the European Union, the United Nations and Russia — the other members of the so-called quartet — in declaring them the starting point, diplomats said. The quartet meets on April 15 in Berlin.
Israel, which has settled hundreds of thousands of Jews inside the West Bank and East Jerusalem, acknowledges that it will have to withdraw from much of the land it now occupies there. But it hopes to hold onto the largest settlement blocs and much of East Jerusalem as well as the border to the east with Jordan and does not want to enter into talks with the other side’s position as the starting point.
That was true even before its closest ally in the Arab world, President Hosni Mubarak of Egypt, was driven from power, helping fuel protest movements that now roil other countries, including Jordan, which has its own peace agreement with Israel.
“Whatever we put forward has to be grounded in security arrangements because of what is going on regionally,” said Zalman Shoval, one of a handful of Netanyahu aides drawing up the Israeli proposal that may be delivered as a speech to the United States Congress in May. “We are facing the rebirth of the eastern front as Iran grows strong. We have to secure the Jordan Valley. And no Israeli government is going to move tens of thousands of Israelis from their homes quickly.”Those Israelis live in West Bank settlements, the source of much of the disagreement not only with the Palestinians but with the world. Not a single government supports Israel’s settlements. The Palestinians say the settlements are proof that the Israelis do not really want a Palestinian state to arise since they are built on land that should go to that state.
Meetings of the 66th Session:
- 13 September 2011, 3 p.m.: Opening of the 66th regular session of the General Assembly, UN Headquarters, in New York
- 19-20 September: High-level Meeting on the prevention and control of non-communicable diseases
- 20 September: High-level meeting on the theme “Addressing desertification, land degradation and drought in the context of sustainable development and poverty eradication”
- 21-23 and 26-30 September: General Debate
- 22 September: High-level meeting of the General Assembly to commemorate the tenth anniversary of the adoption of the Durban Declaration and Programme of Action
Agenda of the 66th Session:
- Annotated preliminary list of items to be included in the provisional agenda [A/66/100]
- Preliminary list of items to be included in the provisional agenda [A/65/50]
Proposed items to be included in the agenda, some of which may be deleted or deferred to a later date.
- Provisional agenda [A/66/150]
- List of supplementary items proposed for inclusion in the agenda [A/66/200]
The following document relating to the Agenda of the 66th session of the General Assembly will be published as follows:
- Memorandum by the Secretary-General to the General Committee (13 September 2011)