Abbas seeks US backing in UN settlement condemnation

In a speech in Brazil, the PA President says Palestinian draft of proposal to declare settlements illegal uses the "same words" as Clinton.

December 31, 2010 10:09
1 minute read.
Mahmoud Abbas

Abbas smiling. (photo credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas said his new attempt to get the United Nations to condemn Israeli settlements was specifically designed to win US support, in a Thursday speech in Brazil.

The Palestinians have drafted a proposal and are lobbying for a Security Council resolution that would declare West Bank settlements illegal and an "obstacle to peace."

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The US has said it does not support the move. Israel says it's an attempt by the Palestinians to avoid negotiations.

Abbas says the Palestinian draft used the "same words" as US Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton has in criticizing settlements, and he "doesn't see why" the US would veto the move.

The PA President was in Brazil for the cornerstone-laying ceremony for a Palestinian embassy in the Brazilian capital of Brasilia, the first state-level Palestinian diplomatic mission in South America. Brazil recently recognized the yet-nonexistent state of Palestine.

Abbas is expected to take part in the event and later attend the swearing-in ceremony of Brazilian President-elect Dilma Rousseff, AFP reported.

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