A series of last-ditch meetings have begun in New York to try to re-launch Israeli-Palestinian peace talks.
The EU, the so-called Quartet of Middle East mediators, along with others are trying to avert a diplomatic confrontation between the Palestinians and the US and Israel.
It is because President Mahmoud Abbas intends to demand full membership of the UN for a Palestinian state later this week.
But while mediators rush around, those on the ground in Gaza don’t hold out much hope for state recognition. Supporters of both the Hamas and Fatah Palestinian factions remain divided despite reconciliation moves by their leaders.
“Since 1948 until today we have been waiting for the implementations of UN resolutions. It is time for the UN to give us statehood. But unfortunately we are doing this while the Palestinian people are still split between Gaza and the occupied West Bank,” said one Gaza resident.
In Bethlehem they have been practising for the expected statehood bid, but Israel and the US firmly oppose the unilateral action arguing that a Palestinian state can only be created through direct negotiations.