U.N. votes to recognize Palestinian sovereignty
by Edith M. Lederer
Associated Press Writer
November 30, 2012 01:01 AM | 724 views | 0 0 comments | 5 5 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A Palestinian flag is displayed as Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas leads his delegation from the U.N. General Assembly after a vote recognizing Palestine as a state on Thursday in New York. Palestinians won the statehood vote, even as the U.S., Israel's closest ally, mounted a campaign to head off the General Assembly vote.
A Palestinian flag is displayed as Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas leads his delegation from the U.N. General Assembly after a vote recognizing Palestine as a state on Thursday in New York. Palestinians won the statehood vote, even as the U.S., Israel's closest ally, mounted a campaign to head off the General Assembly vote.
slideshow
UNITED NATIONS — The United Nations voted overwhelmingly Thursday to recognize a Palestinian state, a long-sought victory for the Palestinians and an embarrassing diplomatic defeat for the United States.

The resolution upgrading the Palestinians’ status to a nonmember observer state at the U.N. was approved by a vote of 138-9, with 41 abstentions, in the 193-member world body.

Real independence, however, remains an elusive dream until the Palestinians negotiate a peace deal with the Israelis, who warned that the General Assembly action will only delay a lasting solution. Israel still controls the West Bank, east Jerusalem and access to Gaza, and it accused the Palestinians of bypassing negotiations with the campaign to upgrade their U.N. status.

The Palestinians still face enormous limitations. They don’t control their borders, airspace or trade, they have separate and competing governments in Gaza and the West Bank and they have no unified army or police.

The United States immediately criticized the historic vote. “Today’s unfortunate and counterproductive resolution places further obstacles in the path peace,” U.N. Ambassador Susan Rice said. U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton called the vote “unfortunate” and

“counterproductive.”

The United States and Israel voted against recognition, joined by Canada, the Czech Republic, the Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Palau and Panama.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the speech by Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas to the General Assembly shortly before the vote “defamatory and venomous,” saying it was “full of mendacious propaganda” against Israel. Netanyahu called the vote meaningless.

Abbas had told the General Assembly that it was “being asked today to issue the birth certificate of Palestine.” Abbas said the vote is the last chance to save the two-state solution.

After the vote, Netanyahu said the U.N. move violated past agreements between Israel and the Palestinians and that Israel would act accordingly, without elaborating what steps it might take.
Comments
(0)
Comments-icon Post a Comment
No Comments Yet
*We welcome your comments on the stories and issues of the day and seek to provide a forum for the community to voice opinions. All comments are subject to moderator approval before being made visible on the website but are not edited. The use of profanity, obscene and vulgar language, hate speech, and racial slurs is strictly prohibited. Advertisements, promotions, and spam will also be rejected. Please read our terms of service for full guides