UN Security Council wasting time on Palestinian gimmicks, Liberman says

Following submission of a draft resolution to the council on Wednesday by Jordan, FM says move would only bring about a worsening of the conflict.

December 18, 2014 09:02
2 minute read.
Avigdor Liberman

Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman addresses the media in Jerusalem. (photo credit: REUTERS)

Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman slammed the Palestinians and the UN on Thursday following the submission on Wednesday of  a draft resolution calling for peace between Israel and the Palestinians within one year and an Israeli withdrawal from the West Bank by the end of 2017.

"Bringing the resolution is another aggressive move of the Palestinians," he said.

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"Abu Mazen [Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas] is leading initiatives that are meant solely to taunt Israel and they have no utility for the Palestinians," he added.

The foreign minister said that the Palestinian moves would only bring about a worsening of the conflict and a deterioration of the situation on the ground and they would surely not advance the possibility of reaching a negotiated settlement.

"It is better that the UN Security Council deal with more important matters of global security, such as the way to deal with murderous terrorist acts like those we saw in Australia and Pakistan this week as well as the situation in Libya and Syria and not waste time on the the gimmicks of the Palestinians," Liberman said. 

The Palestinian-drafted resolution was formally submitted to the 15-member council, which means it could be put to a vote as soon as 24 hours later, but it does not guarantee it will happen. Some drafts formally submitted have never been voted.

Nine votes are needed to adopt a resolution, which would then force the United States, a close ally of Israel, to decide whether to veto it. US Secretary of State John Kerry said on Tuesday the United States had made "no determinations about language, approaches, specific resolutions, any of that."

France, Britain and Germany are also drafting a resolution, which French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius said would propose concluding peace talks in two years. Other parameters for ending the conflict would also be set, diplomats said. The submitted Palestinian draft appears to reflect some European ideas.

Palestinians seek statehood in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, with east Jerusalem as their capital.

The draft resolution submitted on Wednesday states that a negotiated solution should be based on several parameters including the 1967 borders, security agreements, and "Jerusalem as the shared capital of the two States which fulfills the legitimate aspirations of both parties and protects freedom of worship."

The text also "calls upon both parties to abstain from any unilateral and illegal actions, including settlement activities, that could undermine the viability of a two-state solution."

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