NEW YORK [PeterPaul.ca] — Palestinian Prime Minister Mahmoud Abbas submitted his bid for an independent Palestinian state Friday before the 66th United Nations General Assembly in New York.
“The time has come for our men, women and children to live normal lives, for them to be able to sleep without waiting for the worst that the next day will bring,” said Abbas.
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon submitted the application to Ambassador Nawaf Salam of Lebanon – holder of the Council’s rotating presidency for the month — for review following Abba’s speech before the General Assembly on Friday.
Security Council members will review the Palestinian bid during a meeting of all members on Monday, Salam said.
On Thursday, the leaders of Kuwait and Bahrain offered support for an independent Palestinian state saying it would resolve further conflict in the Middle East.
“Six decades have passed, and the United Nations still stands incapable of finding a solution to the Palestinian Question and putting an end to the Israeli occupation of Arab territories,” said Sheikh Nasser Al Mohammad Al Ahmad Al Sabah, Kuwait’s Prime Minister.
“Worse yet, the suffering of the Palestinian people exacerbate further as the years pass. Their economic and social conditions worsen, the settlements expand, their land confiscated, their water stolen, their areas are besieged, their movements are restricted, and their sons and daughters are imprisoned.”
The Prime Minister went on to offer Kuwait’s “full commitment and support to the bid of the Palestinian Authority and its endeavors to obtain membership in the United Nations as an independent and full member state.”
King Hamad Bin Isa Al Khalifa of Bahrain on Wednesday said that it was time to do “justice to the brotherly Palestinian people.”
“Today, more than any time in the past, the international community is offered a propitious opportunity to do justice to the brotherly Palestinian people to achieve their legitimate aspirations,” he said.
Also on Wednesday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Palestine’s U.N. bid “will not succeed” because it [Palestinian government] failed to negotiate peace prior applying for U.N. membership.
Netanyahu hailed U.S. President Barack Obama’s efforts “to shortcut peace negotiations” prior to requesting U.N. membership with both leaders saying privately that they would veto any Palestinian attempt at statehood before the U.N.
“I think that avoiding these negotiations is bad for Israel, bad for the Palestinians, and bad for peace,” Netayahu said while meeting with Obama.
During his speech on Friday Abbas said “negotiations will be meaningless as long as the occupation army on the ground continues to entrench its occupation, instead of rolling it back, and continues to change the demography of our country in order to create a new basis on which to alter the borders.”
Abbas added that Israel “continues to impose its blockade on the Gaza Strip and to target Palestinian civilians by assassinations, air strikes and artillery shelling, persisting with its war of aggression of three years ago on Gaza, which resulted in massive destruction of homes, schools, hospitals, and mosques, and the thousands of martyrs and wounded.”
On the ground, little has changed.
About 200 protesters on Friday threw rocks at Israeli security forces who responded with non-lethal riot dispersal methods. In another incident, about 300 Palestinians hurled rocks at security forces resulting in the death of one. Another two people were wounded, the Israeli Defence Forces said on their website.
Meanwhile, a Palestinian man was shot dead by Israeli soldiers using live-fire rounds in Nablus shortly after arriving on scene of a riot between armed Israeli settlers and Palestinian villagers, according to a report in The Palestinian Chronicle.
“You can pass whatever resolution you want or have any amount of recognition at the U.N., unless you also have change on the ground that is negotiated – because this is the only way it will happen, you’re going to end up in a situation where we end up again,” said Middle Eastern quartet envoy Tony Blair.