Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas announced Friday, Sept. 16, in Ramallah that he would ask the UN Security Council next week for recognition of Palestinian statehood. Once they have a state and a flag and recognition by two-thirds of the world's nations, the Palestinians would leave all other issues open for negotiation with Israel, he said.
While citing the 1967 borders for a future Palestinian state in reference to his UN application,
Abbas stressed that Israel's "occupation" will not will not end the next day and much more remains to be done because the 1967 lines do not define the true borders – any more than the roadblocks and the settlements. The real Palestinian borders were laid down in 1947 down by the UN. All other areas [meaning large parts of the state of Israel] are "occupied territory" which the Palestinians intend to claim.
The Palestinian leader sought to imply that the 126 governments which have recognized the Palestinian right to a state had accepted this interpretation.
His other points:
1. The Palestinian application to the UN Security Council is only one step on the road to full independence, after which "all options remain open." Its purpose is to obtain full UN membership and then return to the table for negotiation on this new basis.
2. He emphasized the Palestinian claim to Jerusalem as state capital, pledged to work for the refugees' return and strive for national unity by healing the rift with Hamas.
3. Abbas issued a strict caution against violence demonstrations and protests, because he said this would play into Israel's hands.
A long passage was devoted to the obstacles he accused Israel of placing in the path of Palestinian independence, especially by building new settlements on the West Bank and set them against the strenuous efforts the Palestinians have made to establish the administration and institutions of the future state.
"We promised Obama to have them ready by September," he said and "so they are."
He accused Israel soldiers and settlers of letting dogs loose against Palestinians and even wild boars to destroy crops. At the same time, Abbas said he was turning to the UN not in order to isolate Israel or assail its legitimacy but only to delegitimize and terminate the occupation.
In another part of his speech, Mahmoud Abbas boasted about the democracy prevailing in the Palestinian Authority (West Bank). We respect the will of the people, he said: "They don't have to demonstrate in the squares (a dig at the Arab Revolt)."
debkafile: The last Palestinian elections took place in 2006. The president, the legislature and the municipal councils are no longer legally in office. Abbas and the Palestinian Authority which he heads are maintained by the Palestinian armed security forces.