UN to decide September 15 on whether to raise Palestinian flag at headquarters

A vote will take place 10 days before the annual summit of 193 nations convenes at UN headquarters in New York.

August 27, 2015 20:25
1 minute read.

Demonstrators in Brussels hold a giant Palestinian flag and anti-Israel signs. (photo credit: REUTERS/FRANCOIS LENOIR)

A draft resolution was presented to the United Nations on Thursday to request that the Palestinian flag be raised the next time world leaders convene at UN headquarters, according to AFP.

The resolution was presented in advance of the annual 193-nation UN General Assembly set for September 25. It originally included a request for the the Vatican flag to fly as well, but was removed at the Vatican's insistence.

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A vote on the resolution, sponsored by 21 countries, will take place September 15. Among the co-sponsors are Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Algeria and Jordan.

Both the Vatican and Palestinians have observer status at the UN and are not considered to be full members.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Pope Francis are planning to attend the event at headquarters in New York.

Currently, only member states' flags fly at UN headquarters. UN diplomats say the United States and Israel, which do not recognize Palestinian statehood, would likely be irked by any move to fly the Palestinian flag at UN headquarters.

One Foreign Ministry official in Jerusalem dismissed the resolution as a “cheap and unnecessary gimmick.”

In a note circulated to some UN members and seen by Reuters, the Vatican made clear that while it did not object to the Palestinians proposing a resolution to fly their own flag, the Holy See had no plans to join the initiative - even though the Vatican formally recognized the State of Palestine earlier this year.

Reuters contributed to this report.

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