In New York Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas has met with U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. He confirmed in the meeting he will press ahead with plans to seek full U.N. membership for a Palestinian state.
That request will be presented to the United Nations Security Council on Friday in defiance of calls to back down. French Foreign Minister Alain Juppe added his voice saying the bid would not pass the Security Council. The US remain emphatic too.
“The Palestinians will not and cannot achieve statehood through a declaration at the United Nations. It is a distraction and in fact it’s counterproductive. That remains our position,” stressed Jay Carney, White House press secretary.
Israel and the United States, says Abbas wants to keep the peace process restricted to a bilateral dialogue overseen by Washington. It is a failure of that dialogue which has prompted the U.N. membership move.
In the West Bank a new campaign has been launched to protect Palestinians from attacks by Jewish settlers. The volunteer based initiative called, “Refusing to Die in Silence” is say activists, “to document and to interfere” whenever Israelis attack Palestinians.