Palestinians push back UN statehood bid


The Palestinian Authority is planning to postpone its attempt to secure a UN timetable for the unilateral establishment of a Palestinian state.

Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki told Ma'an news agency on Monday that the decision had been delayed due to the difficulty of reaching the necessary majority in the Security Council and American pressure.

In the interview, Mr Maliki said that the PA had not yet gained the support of nine Security Council members - out of 15 - that would be necessary to override a probable veto by the US.

He did not, however, say whether this meant nine members of the current council or of the new one which will begin serving in 2015 and contains more non-permanent members supportive of the Palestinians. Mr Maliki said that the PA had been told by representatives of the some of the permanent members that at present they were focusing on the nuclear talks with Iran and would not be in favour of bringing the Palestinian motion to a vote.

The Palestinian resolution will call for Israel's full withdrawal from the territory it captured in 1967 during the Six-Day War, including East Jerusalem, and set out a time frame for doing so by the end of 2016.

Meanwhile, the European Parliament this week postponed a vote on a motion calling on governments to recognise a Palestinian state. The vote will now take place in mid-December.

Similar motions have been passed in the House of Commons and the Irish and Spanish parliaments. The French senate is also expected to vote on the issue soon.

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