Palestine Wins Status of State in Vote by U.N. Assembly

More than 130 countries voted on Thursday to grant Palestine the upgraded status of nonmember observer state in the United Nations, a stinging defeat for Israel and the United States and a boost for President Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority, who was weakened by the recent eight days of fighting in Gaza.

The new ranking could make it easier for the Palestinians to pursue Israel in international legal forums, but it remained unclear what effect it would have on attaining what both sides say they want — a two-state solution.

Still, the vote offered a showcase for an extraordinary international lineup of support for the Palestinians and constituted a deeply symbolic achievement for their cause, made even weightier by arriving on the 65th anniversary of the General Assembly vote that divided the former British Mandate of Palestine into two states, one Jewish and the other Arab — a vote that Israel considers the international seal of approval for its birth.

The tally, in which 138 members voted yes, 9 voted no and 41 abstained, took place after a speech by Mr. Abbas to the General Assembly, in which he called the moment a “last chance” to save the two-state solution amid a narrowing window of opportunity.

“The General Assembly is called upon today to issue a birth certificate of the reality of the state of Palestine,” he said before the vote.

But in the run-up to the vote, he and Ron Prosor, the Israeli ambassador to the United Nations, blamed the other side for not doing enough to pursue peace.

”We have not heard one word from any Israeli official expressing any sincere concern to save the peace process,” Mr. Abbas said.

“On the contrary, our people have witnessed, and continue to witness, an unprecedented intensification of military assaults, the blockade, settlement activities and ethnic cleansing, particularly in occupied East Jerusalem, and mass arrests, attacks by settlers and other practices by which this Israeli occupation is becoming synonymous with an apartheid system of colonial occupation, which institutionalizes the plague of racism and entrenches hatred and incitement.”

“The moment has arrived for the world to say clearly: enough of aggression, settlements and occupation,” he said.

Mr. Prosor, speaking after Mr. Abbas but before the vote was taken, said the United Nations resolution would do nothing to advance the process.

“Today the Palestinians are turning their back on peace,” he said. “Don’t let history record that today the U.N. helped them along on their march of folly.”

As expected, the vote won backing from a number of European countries, and was a rebuff to intense American and Israeli diplomacy. In an indication of the bitterness of the blow to the Israelis, the office of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu released a statement calling Mr. Abbas’s speech “defamatory and venomous” that was “full of mendacious propaganda against the IDF and the citizens of Israel.”

“Someone who wants peace does not talk in such a manner,” the statement continued.

Among the countries that had forecast their yes votes were France, Spain and Switzerland. Others, like Germany, had said they would abstain, and a few countries joined Israel and the United States in voting no.

Mr. Prosor reiterated that Israel also favors a two-state resolution to the Arab-Israeli conflict, but one reached through negotiations, with some parts of the occupied territories remaining in Israeli hands, with a strong focus on security concerns and with a formal recognition by the Palestinians of Israel’s legitimacy as a Jewish state.

“That’s right. Two states for two peoples,” Mr. Prosor said. “In fact, President Abbas, I did not hear you use the phrase ‘two states for two peoples’ this afternoon. In fact, I have never heard you say the phrase ‘two states for two peoples.’ Because the Palestinian leadership has never recognized that Israel is the nation-state of the Jewish people.”

The Israelis also say that the fact that Mr. Abbas is not welcome in the Gaza Strip, the Palestinian coastal enclave run by Hamas, from which he was ejected five years ago, shows that there is no viable Palestinian leadership living up to its obligations now.

“This resolution will not change the situation on the ground,” Mr. Prosor said. “It will not change the fact that the Palestinian Authority has no control over Gaza. That is 40 percent of the territory he claims to represent.”

The vote came shortly after an eight-day Israeli military assault on Gaza that Israel described as a response to stepped-up rocket fire into Israel. The operation killed scores of Palestinians and was aimed at reducing the arsenal of Hamas, the militant group that controls Gaza, part of the territory that the United Nations resolution expects to make up a future state of Palestine.

The Palestinian Authority, based in the West Bank city of Ramallah, was politically weakened by the Gaza fighting, with its rivals in Hamas seen by many Palestinians as more willing to stand up to Israel and fight back. That shift in sentiment is one reason that some Western countries gave for backing the United Nations resolution, to strengthen Mr. Abbas and his more moderate colleagues in their contest with Hamas.

Mr. Abbas directed harsh criticism toward Israel, saying that the “aggression against our people in the Gaza Strip has confirmed once again the urgent and pressing need to end the Israeli occupation and for our people to gain their freedom and independence.”

“This aggression also confirms the Israeli government’s adherence to the policy of occupation, brute force and war, which in turn obliges the international community to shoulder its responsibilities toward the Palestinian people and toward peace,” Mr. Abbas said early in his speech.

When the General Assembly voted to divide Palestine into two states in 1947, Arabs rejected the division of the land and the creation of Israel. But since the late 1980s, the Palestine Liberation Organization has officially endorsed two states, with the state of Palestine defined as comprising the West Bank, East Jerusalem and Gaza — areas beyond Israel’s pre-1967 borders that it captured in the 1967 Middle East war.

Mr. Prosor also mentioned that day 65 years ago and what it meant to the Israelis, saying: “The Palestinians could have chosen to live side by side with the Jewish state of Israel. Sixty-five years ago they could have chosen to accept the solution of two states for two peoples. They rejected it then, and they are rejecting it again today.”

Palestinian officials said it was Israel that had violated its agreements and international law by building settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. They say 20 years of failed negotiations with Israel pushed them to seek this kind of international recognition in the hopes that it would press Israel and its allies in Washington to step up peace talks.

Realizing that they could not head off the vote on Thursday, Israel and the United States worked to contain the fallout from it.

A major concern for the Americans is that the Palestinians might use their new status to try to join the International Criminal Court. That prospect particularly worries the Israelis, who fear that the Palestinians might press for an investigation of their practices in the occupied territories.

Another worry is that the Palestinians might use the vote to seek membership in specialized agencies of the United Nations, a move that could have consequences for the financing of the international organizations as well as the Palestinian Authority itself. Congress cut off financing to the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization, also known as Unesco, in 2011 after it accepted Palestine as a member. The United States is a major contributor to many of these agencies and plays an active role on their governing boards.

Western diplomats anticipated approval of the resolution, which upgraded Palestine’s observer status at the United Nations from that of an “entity,” and pushed for a Palestinian commitment not to seek membership in the International Criminal Court and United Nations specialized agencies, a privilege that has been open to other nonmember observer states.

Another step would be an affirmation by the Palestinians that the road to statehood was through the peace process. And a third could be a Palestinian commitment to open negotiations with the Israelis.

Such assurances do not appear to have been provided.

NY Times

  • Hannibal

    YES!!! Now take back the Palestinians residing in Lebanon. :)

    • Mahdi Kenaani

      If you return to lebanon your stink would make them flee back. sorry if it offends you but i just couldnt help saying this. the reason why i say so is because you sound like another crappy arnold schwarzenegger and he pisses me off to no end!

      • Patience2

         You know, you could do the same for Iran!

        • Mahdi Kenaani

          let me get this straight you want me to go to iran in order to make the arab jarabs living there to flee back to where they come from? thats a great idea.

      • Hannibal

        It’s ok no offense here… But I was trying to help you Shias since most Palestinians in the camps are Sunni wahabis… 3mool mnii7 wu kebb bell ba7er… tut tut tut.

        • Mahdi Kenaani

          okay if they are wahabis then palestine isnt the right place to send them back to younno… the only right place to send the wahabis is to hell. may i suggest the lebanese ppl to start with that ass-ir gay? then you can go on with the palestinian wahabis.

        • JS_Bach

          Hey Mahdi, so what’s right place to send the Shit3ites to? Heaven? If you’re going to burn the Wahabis in Hell, I suggest we send the Shit3ites as fuel.

      • nagy_michael2

        why don’t and you hezbollah faggots leave Lebanon for once and all. You’re the one who is aiding zionist and indirectly allow them to destroy Lebanon. Your assholes hid behind populated buildings and school children when shooting at israelis..so to invite retaliations and cause killing not just among Sunnis and Christians but also among Shiites. you have no respect to even your sect. you worship the devils in Quom and Tehran.. the Playboy Khameini who foul around with women and fast cars and play the wholly card with Iranians. Iranian people majority are not satisfied with these jackasses who are trying to control thru religion. And certainly don’t need hezbollah thugs torturing them during their protest and raping them in jail. Yes hezbollah raped men to teach them lessons. that showed you who is being fucked dirtbag..

        • Mahdi Kenaani

          why do you even care that much about lebanon? and just for the record it is absolutely not the majority of the iraniANGELS who are dissatisfied with the mullahs… every single iraniangel is dissatisfied with the regime even those who are religious! ordinary iraniangels dont give a shit about lebanon or any other arab state for that matter to put it mildly… and for that reason all iraniangels want closer ties with americancer not camel riding arabs… for instance, do you remember a while ago there was an israhelli “we love iran/israel loves iran” campagin going on? then, do you remember how the iraniangels responded? if you dont, let me refresh your memory! they responded with a “we love israel/iran loves israel” campaign… what does that tell you???? so if you truely are a lebanese and care about lebanon then dont fool yourself believing that the current iranian regime is bad for lebanon or the arabs in general. the current iranian regime is the best that will ever happen to you arabs. Do you seriously believe that a democratic iranian government would bring your honor back every time israhell rapes you? read my lips if this mullah regime ever falls the worst is yet to come for lebanon not the other way around!!!!! maybe this is actually what you want because you are not a lebanese… On the other hand i wish all the lebanese and the muslim world all the best why i am perfectly fine with this arab mullah regime – which it is in fact called by the iraniangels.

  • Hannibal

    YES!!! Now take back the Palestinians residing in Lebanon. :)

    • Mahdi Kenaani

      If you return to lebanon your stink would make them flee back. sorry if it offends you but i just couldnt help saying this.

      • Patience2

         You know, you could do the same for Iran!

        • Mahdi Kenaani

          let me get this straight you want me to go to iran in order to make the arabs jarabs living there to flee back to where they come from? thats a great idea.

      • Hannibal

        It’s ok no offense here… But i was trying to help you Shias since most Palestinians in the camps are Sunni wahabis… 3mool mnii7 wu kebb bell ba7er… tut tut tut.

        • Mahdi Kenaani

          okay if they are wahabis then palestine isnt the right place to send them back to younno… the only right place to send the wahabis is to hell. may i suggest the lebanese ppl to start with that ass-ir gay? then you can go on with the palestinian wahabis.

        • JS_Bach

          Hey Mahdi, so what’s right place to send the Shit3ites? Heaven? If you’re going to burn the Wahabis in Hell, I suggest we send the Shit3ites as fuel.

      • nagy_michael2

        why don’t and you hezbollah faggots leave Lebanon for once and all. You’re the one who is aiding zionist and indirectly allow them to destroy Lebanon. Your assholes hid behind populated buildings and school children when shooting at israelis..so to invite retaliations and cause killing not just among Sunnis and Christians but also among Shiites. you have no respect to even your sect. you worship the devils in Quom and Tehran.. the Playboy Khameini who foul around with women and fast cars and play the wholly card with Iranians. Iranian people majority are not satisfied with these jackasses who are trying to control thru religion. And certainly don’t need hezbollah thugs torturing them during their protest and raping them in jail. Yes hezbollah raped men to teach them lessons. that showed you who is being fucked dirtbag..

        • Mahdi Kenaani

          why do you even care that much about lebanon? and just for the record it is absolutely not the majority of the iraniANGELS who are dissatisfied with the mullahs… every single iraniangel is dissatisfied with the regime even those who are religious! ordinary iraniangels dont give a shit about lebanon or any other arab state for that matter to put it mildly… and for that reason all iraniangels want closer ties with americancer not camel riding arabs… for instance, do you remember a while ago there was an israhelli “we love iran/israel loves iran” campagin going on? then, do you remember how the iraniangels responded? if you dont, let me refresh your memory! they responded with a “we love israel/iran loves israel” campaign… what does that tell you???? so if you truely are a lebanese and care about lebanon then dont fool yourself believing that the current iranian regime is bad for lebanon or the arabs in generel. the current iranian regime is the best that will ever happen to you arabs. Do you seriously believe that a democratic iranian government would bring your honor back every time israhell rapes you? read my lips if this mullah regime ever falls the worst is yet to come for lebanon not the other way around!!!!! maybe this is actually what you want because you are not a lebanese… On the other hand i wish all the lebanese and the muslim world all the best why i am perfectly fine with this arab mullah regime – which it is in fact called by the iraniangels. 

  • nagy_michael2

    yah he talks about the Brutal force of the israelis but his troops didn’t lift a finger to help their fellow gazans.. He is nothing but double standard like Arafat was.. All that rumbling to make himself look good in front of the palestinians..If any of hamas leader did the rumbling fine. But this guy should be ashamed of himself and his so called peace.. How can the israelis trust him to be partner in peace when he plays games with all sides.. either fight or just shut up and resign from the presidency of palestine.. And yes I hope you can get your land back and all the palestinians with you from Lebanon..

  • nagy_michael2

    yah he talks about the Brutal force of the israelis but his troops didn’t lift a finger to help their fellow gazans.. He is nothing but double standard like Arafat was.. All that rumbling to make himself look good in front of the palestinians..If any of hamas leader did the rumbling fine. But this guy should be ashamed of himself and his so called peace.. How can the israelis trust him to be partner in peace when he plays games with all sides.. either fight or just shut up and resign from the presidency of palestine.. And yes I hope you can get your land back and all the palestinians with you from Lebanon..

  • wargame1

    The ultimate gain for the Palestinians is to win some land. 

    • Hannibal

      How about the Palestinian Christians which dominated the land before the Islam cancer spread? Did they get back anything? Beyt lahem used to be all Christian now it is 90% moslem, do you think they will yield it back to the Palestinian Christians who left under Islamists pressures?

      • Mahdi Kenaani

        and iraq used to be a peaceful country before the ameriCANCER spread…

        • Hannibal

          ma keen Saddam reekebkon bell 3ared… You should kiss U.S. ass for giving you back Iraq.

        • nagy_michael2

          And now they have Iraninans and Hezbollah cancer.. oops i forgot you don’t speak arabic..

        • Mahdi Kenaani

          @nagy_michael2:disqus nope they are still suffering from ameriCANCER. and what has it to do with whether i speak arabic or not? and you are right i dont speak arabic so you can keep your disgusting language for yourself. as we say in persian: farsi qane arabi bade

        • nagy_michael2

          Mahdi your persian sounds like more hebrew.. Well as we say in Lebanon ‘Tilhas Tizzi ya akkrout’.

        • Mahdi Kenaani

          @nagy_michael2:disqus how can you tell nagyboy? is it due to the fact that your asshole is fucked frequently by ppl who speak hebrew? baba koonet shode darvaze!

      • Mahdi Kenaani

        yes i kiss US ass for giving me loads of virgin hunters like this wargame1

  • wargame1

    The ultimate gain for the Palestinians is to win some land. 

    • Hannibal

      How about the Palestinian Christians which dominated the land before the Islam cancer spread? Did they get back anything? Beyt lahem used to be all Christian now it is 90% moslem, do you think they will yield it back to the Palestinian Christians who left under Islamists pressures?

      • Mahdi Kenaani

        and iraq used to be a peaceful country before the ameriCANCER spread…

        • Hannibal

          ma keen Saddam reekebkon bell 3ared… You should kiss U.S. ass for giving you back Iraq.

        • nagy_michael2

          And now they have Iraninans and Hezbollah cancer.. oops i forgot you don’t speak arabic..

        • Mahdi Kenaani

          @nagy_michael2:disqus nope they are still suffering from ameriCANCER. and what has it to do with wheter i speak arabic or not? and you are right i dont speak arabic so you can keep your disgusting language for yourself. as we say in persian: farsi qane arabi bade

        • nagy_michael2

          Mahdi your persian sounds like more hebrew.. Well as we say in Lebanon ‘Tilhas Tizzi ya akkrout’.

        • Mahdi Kenaani

          @nagy_michael2:disqus how can you tell nagyboy? is it due to the fact that your asshole is fucked frequently by ppl who speak hebrew? baba koonet shode darvaze!

      • Mahdi Kenaani

        yes i kiss US ass for giving me loads of virgin hunters like this wargame1

  • Btru2u

    Do you really think Israel will take this lying down, when their aim is to expand. Read Deutronomy7:1 in the bible , it instructs the Jews to wipe out all Arabs in the region. That is the prophecy they are trying to fulfill.

  • Btru2u

    Do you really think Israel will take this lying down, when their aim is to expand. Read Deutronomy7:1 in the bible , it instructs the Jews to wipe out all Arabs in the region. That is the prophecy they are trying to fulfill.