The special UN Security Council Admission Committee, tasked with dealing with state membership requests, held on Friday its first meeting to discuss the Palestinian request to become a full member at the international body.The official request to join the UN was officially submitted last week by Palestinian President, Mahmoud Abbas, to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. The admission committee consists of 15 member countries.
The committee stated that its members unanimously agreed to hold another meeting at what was described as an “expert level” next week.
Security Council President for the month of September, Nawaf Salam, stated that the expert level of discussion will convene next week to decide whether to accept or reject the Palestinian demand.
Salaam, who also holds the position of the permanent Lebanese representative at the United Nations, stated that after the expert level meeting takes place next week, the chairman of the committee will report to the Security Council in two week, to inform council members about the work of the committee”.
This means that Nigeria, who will be holding the president seat in October, will be following-up the issue. The country is still considering the Palestinian bid.
After Salam made his statements, Palestinian observer at the UN, Riyad Mansour, told reporters that the Palestinians are hoping that the second stage of the process will be completed in an efficient manner, and without any delay.
To be accepted as a permanent member, the submitted application must be approved by the Security Council before it is sent to the UN General Assembly for final approval.
But the United States has repeatedly declared it will use its Veto power to topple the Palestinian request. Siding by Israel, the U.S claimed that this application is a “unilateral move”, and that a state can only be the outcome of direct peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians.
In his speech, Abbas said that the real unilateral move is not the Palestinian bid at the UN, but the ongoing aggression and occupation, and Israel’s ongoing construction and expansion of settlements in the occupied territories, including in occupied East Jerusalem.
Two days ago, the Israeli government of Benjamin Netanyahu announced a new plan to build 1100 new homes for Jewish settlers in the Gilo illegal settlement, in occupied East Jerusalem.
The Palestinian leadership regarded the new plan as a clear message from Israel regarding its rejection to real peace in the region, and also dubbed the announcement as a real unilateral move made by Israel.
The United States only said that the new plan is “counterproductive to all efforts to resume peace talks”.
Israel rejected the condemnations by claiming that Gilo is not a settlement, but a neighborhood in Jerusalem. Israel refuses to hold talks on Jerusalem, and considered is as its “eternal and united capital”
On July 30th 1980, the Israeli Knesset passed a law considering Jerusalem ‘complete and united’ as the capital of Israel.
On August 20 1980, the United Nations Security Council adopted resolution 478 declaring the Israeli “Jerusalem Law” as a violation of international law, and stating that the Council will not recognize it. The resolution passed by 14 votes, with no votes against it, while the Washington abstained.
Besides ongoing invasions, attacks, takeover and demolition of Palestinian homes in occupied East Jerusalem, Israeli settlement activities were among the main issues that pushed the Palestinians to quit direct talks with Tel Aviv.
Under the United Nations, Security Council and International Law, East Jerusalem is an occupied city.