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svgadminsvgNovember 11, 2011svgNews

PA Statehood Bid Goes to the Security Council

The Palestinian Authority’s bid for UN membership officially went to the Security Council on Friday, after its admissions committee approved a report saying there is no consensus among the 15 council nations.

The Associated Press reported that the admissions committee report said the council is divided among those who support the bid, those who cannot support it and therefore would abstain, and those who believe the application doesn’t meet the criteria for membership and oppose it.

The report does not include the number or names of countries that would support, abstain, or oppose the bid, AP said.

Portugal’s UN Ambassador Jose Filipe Moraes Cabral, the current council president, told reporters that the council will examine the report and discuss possible future actions. He gave no timetable.

However, there have been wide reports that the bid will likely not pass and on Tuesday, the PA’s Foreign Minister Riyad al-Malki admitted that the entity does not have enough support in the UN Security Council for recognition of a Palestinian state.

It was the first time since PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas submitted his statehood bid to the Security Council in September that a PA official admitted that the move will fail.

Malki’s admission came after an earlier report which said that France, Britain and Colombia all intend to abstain in the vote. British Foreign Secretary William Hague confirmed on Wednesday his country’s plan to abstain.

The PA has already announced it will move on to ‘Plan B’ and will seek an upgraded observer status that would give it access to key international organizations.

On Friday, Riyad Mansour, the PA’s UN observer, said that PLO leadership “will make a determination very quickly as to the next step forward in the UN system” after consultations with Arab leaders and supporters of its membership bid.

According to AP, the PA now has several options, including asking their supporters in the Security Council to introduce a resolution recommending membership, or going to the General Assembly and seeking a resolution that would raise their status from a UN permanent observer to a non-member observer state.

Mansour noted that many countries, including Israel, did not gain UN membership on their first attempt and there was no shame in seeking a vote and failing.

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