Friday, November 11, 2011

Israel Action Network Update: Post UDI Developments

As many of you are aware, the leadership of the Palestinian Authority (PA) is continuing with the bid to seek admission as a full member state within the United Nations (popularly known as UDI). Tomorrow a Security Council subcommittee will publish a report on the PA’s request for full membership and whether “Palestine” meets internationally accepted statehood criteria. This could be followed next week by Security Council action, although it currently appears that the Palestinians are one vote short of the 9 affirmative votes required. As a result, the Palestinians, according to some reports, may actually not call for a vote.  Instead, they may simply request that the General Assembly upgrade the PA’s status within this body to non-member observer state – a measure that given the automatic majority there certainly would pass.

The Israel Action Network is monitoring the situation. I will provide you with updates as the situation develops. Meanwhile, our messaging remains that this Palestinian strategy avoids and undermines the only means to solve the conflict – direct, bilateral negotiations between the involved parties, without preconditions. Please see further talking points below. It should be noted that the call for a return to direct negotiations without preconditions is also the position of the Israeli government and the Quartet (EU, US, Russia and UN). 

Separately, the United States has stated it will not provide its $65 million contribution to the United Nations Educational, scientific and cultural (UNSECO) after admitting the Palestinians as a member. This figure represents 22% of UNESCO’s budget and has led to UNSECO to halt spending on new programs. It is expected that the Palestinians will pursue full membership in other UN agencies, including the International Atomic Energy Agency, in the months ahead.

By Linda Feldman - Director, Jewish Community Relations Center


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