Palestinians submit resolution for upgraded status at UN, vote set for Nov. 29

Click photo to download. Caption: Mahmoud Abbas. Credit: World Economic Forum.( The Palestinian Authority has submitted a final draft resolution to the United Nations General Assembly, paving the way for a vote on upgraded status at the UN on Nov. 29, Ma’an News Agency reported.

The Palestinians are seeking to upgrade their status from “observer” to “non-member state,” which would allow them to join several UN agencies and treaties, such as the International Criminal Court (ICC), where the Palestinians could bring criminal charges against Israel.

The Palestinians failed to gain UN statehood last year after the U.S. threatened to veto the initiative in the Security Council. However, this year the Palestinians only need to gain a simple majority in the UN General Assembly, where the U.S. does not have veto power. Analysts expect the Palestinians to easily gain passage.

As a result, the U.S. and Israel had been working to convince the Palestinians to soften the language in the resolution, including a guarantee not to join the ICC, Haaretz reported.

However, the Palestinians refused to budge, telling U.S. and European diplomats that it was only prepared to give an oral promise not to pursue action in the ICC for six months.

Also complicating efforts, Hamas, which had originally opposed the UN initiative pursued by its rivals in the Palestinian Authority, recently came out in support of the resolution. 

Posted on November 27, 2012 .