The Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has announced in Ramallah that he will be demanding full UN statehood for his people at the United Nations next week, and will not settle for the lesser prize of observer status.
“We will go to the United Nations to demand a legitimate right to be a full member State of the United Nations,” he said.
Abbas then jokingly wondered if anyone in the audience believed him; before today many had thought his ambitions were limited to observer status, which is within their grasp.
“We will go to the Security Council… and as soon as I do my speech at the General Assembly, I will give my demand to the Secretary General Ban Ki Moon, who will transmit it to the Security Council; our choice is the Security Council,” he insisted.
However the symbolic Palestinian seat that is on show in the West Bank appears likely to remain unfilled, as the USA has vowed to veto the application, whereas observer status only requires a two-thirds majority in the larger UN General Assembly.