Palestinian official admits defeat in UN bid
A Palestinian official on Friday blamed a "powerful country" for torpedoing an application by the Palestinian Authority to become a full member of the United Nations, dpa reported.
"Unfortunately this is the reality today, but we will not be deterred and will continue our efforts," Riyad Mansour, the Palestinian envoy to the UN in New York, said after the UN Security Council's admission committee adopted a report that found that there was not sufficient support for the application.
The United States had threatened to veto the Palestinian application if it were brought to a vote in the 15-nation council. But the vote became unnecessary because the PA did not have the required nine votes to support the recommendation.
Diplomats have said the PA could still apply directly to the General Assembly, where it could obtain a two-thirds majority of votes to become a member. The US cannot veto decisions by the assembly.
"We don't expect Palestine to wait for years," Mansour told reporters. "We are dead determined to succeed in our efforts."
While the Palestinian UN bid had "strong support" in the UN Security Council, it had "massive support" in the General Assembly, where 130 out of the 193 UN members supported the Palestinian people's quest for statehood and UN membership, Mansour added.
The Palestinian envoy said the Palestinian leadership in Ramallah would decide the next step in the application for the UN bid.
The council president, Portugal's UN Ambassador Jose Cabral, said the admission committee adopted on Friday the report of its findings after eight closed-door meetings over a two-month period.
The report by the Committee on the Admission of New Members summed up the round of discussions at the end of October, finding that it was "unable to make a unanimous recommendation to the Security Council."