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Palestinians staying the course on Security Council bid

JTA

November 16, 2011 | 10:54 am

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas gestures as he speaks during an event marking the 7th anniversary of the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat in the West Bank city of Ramallah on Nov. 16. Photo by REUTERS/Mohamad Torokman

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas gestures as he speaks during an event marking the 7th anniversary of the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat in the West Bank city of Ramallah on Nov. 16. Photo by REUTERS/Mohamad Torokman

The Palestinians will continue to press their bid for full membership in the U.N. Security Council.

The decision to request a Security Council vote, even though it is likely to fail, came Tuesday at the request of Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas during a meeting of the Palestine Liberation Organization’s executive committee. The committee also decided to set aside an alternate plan to ask the U.N. General Assembly to upgrade the Palestinians’ status to enhanced observer status, similar to the Vatican.

Nine of the 15 Security Council members must approve the request; the Palestinians reportedly have eight countries in favor. The United States has threatened to use its veto to quash the request even if it does pass.

Five Security Council seats will go to new countries at the first of the year.

Abbas has not said when he will call for a vote. He also has vowed to return to the Security Council multiple times in a quest to achieve full membership in the United Nations for a Palestinian state.

“Our strategy now is to continue knocking on the door of the Security Council and not other doors,” Foreign Minister Reyad Al-Malki told Voice of Palestine radio, according to Reuters.

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