(January 14, 2019 / JNS) The Palestinians are set to lead the largest bloc of members in the United Nations, known as the Group of 77 (G77) and China, on Tuesday.
Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas is expected to be in New York for the ceremony, followed by a meeting with U.N. Secretary General António Guterres, U.N. Security Council president Francisco Antonio Cortorreal of the Dominican Republic, in addition to other world leaders.
Because the Palestinians have the status of a non-member state at the United Nations that would have made them ineligible for the chairmanship of the bloc without a special vote, the U.N. General Assembly held one last October to temporarily elevate the Palestinians’ status at the world body to resolve the issue.
The G77 was established in 1964 and seeks “to articulate and promote their collective economic interests and enhance their joint negotiating capacity on all major international economic issues within the United Nations system, and promote South-South cooperation for development,” according to its website.
“This is an important historical event added to the political achievements of the State of Palestine since it joined the UN as an observer state in 2012. It is also an important achievement to assert the Palestinian identity in the international community, which colonial powers have tried to abolish over many centuries.” Presidential spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeineh told Palestinian Wafa news agency on Monday.