Palestinian Authority President Abbas confirmed on Sunday that he will pursue recognition of a Palestinian state at the United Nations General Assembly in September.Abbas stated that the move would be pursued unilaterally unless serious negotiations with Israel were to resume. Previously Abbas indicated that recognition would be pursued irrespective of negotiations with Israel.
He told Palestinian Liberation Organization and Fatah members, “I say that if negotiations have failed we will go to the United Nations for membership.”
Negotiations halted in the September of 2010 when Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu refused to renew a partial freeze on illegal settlement construction.
Support for the recognition of a Palestinian state is strong in the UN with a majority of the General Assembly as well as permanent Security Council members France and the UK publicly supportive. The U.S., Israel, and Germany, however, are notable opponents.
Recognition of statehood by the UN requires a majority vote in the General Assembly and a recommendation by the Security Council. President Barrack Obama has previously stated that the US will veto any recommendation for Palestinian statehood.
Palestinian diplomats hope to implement UN resolution 377 which allows a two thirds majority of the General assembly to call a special session with the power to override the Security Council. It is unclear what the outcome of such a vote would be since UN resolutions are only legally binding if adopted by the Security Council.
The Palestinian Authority is seeking recognition on the pre-1967 borders.