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Abbas: Palestinian statehood bid to go to UN this evening

A vote on the resolution could be delayed until next year as the text is translated into different languages

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas speaks during a meeting of the Palestinian leadership in the West Bank city of Ramallah, on December 14, 2014. (photo credit: AFP/Abbas Momani)
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas speaks during a meeting of the Palestinian leadership in the West Bank city of Ramallah, on December 14, 2014. (photo credit: AFP/Abbas Momani)

The final draft of a resolution calling for a Palestinian state is to be submitted to the United Nations Security Council at 12:30 p.m. New York time on Monday, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas told senior leaders of his Fatah party.

The resolution, calling on Israel to withdraw to the pre-1967 lines by the end of 2017, is to be submitted to the Security Council presidency by Jordan, following its approval by Arab ambassadors to the UN, PA Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki told the Palestinian Ma’an news agency. But UN procedural bureaucracy may delay the actual vote until the beginning of 2015, he added.

“This process will take more than a day or two, and we must be clear with our people in order to avoid a state of confusion stemming from the numerous statements, which are sometimes contradictory,” Maliki said. “These procedures are unrelated to the Palestinian position, but are routine UN procedures in such cases.”

Maliki’s comments contradicted an assertion by chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat, who in an interview with Al-Arabiya Friday said that the Palestinian proposal would be brought to a UN vote no later than Wednesday.

According to a report from the official Palestinian WAFA news agency Abbas also spoke with US Secretary of State John Kerry on Sunday to inform him of the development.

Kerry reportedly responded by trying to convince Abbas to push off the resolution until after Israeli elections in March, hinting that the US would exercise its veto and could impose economic sanctions as well, an unnamed official told the Chinese Xinhua news agency.

The resolution’s current timetable is almost certain to be rejected by the Security Council — either through a failure to get the minimum nine “yes” votes required or through a veto from the United States, Israel’s closest ally, which insists there be a negotiated solution to the conflict.

Jordan’s UN Ambassador, the Arab representative on the Security Council, has said repeatedly that Jordan wants a consensus resolution agreed to by all 15 council members.

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