'NY Times': Palestinian statehood vote is 'damaging'

Editorial suggests new roadmap drafted by US can “induce Palestinians to drop their statehood bid.”

August 8, 2011 08:29
2 minute read.
United Nations Security Council chamber

United Nations Security Council chamber 311. (photo credit: Patrick Gruban/WikiCommons)

The New York Times published an editorial on Sunday criticizing the expected vote on Palestinian statehood at the United Nations in September, saying its “consequences could be profoundly damaging for all involved.”

The paper of note whose editorials are considered to carry considerable weight in international affairs expressed sympathy with the Palestinians' frustration over stalled talks with Israel but said a showdown at the UN would not help advance their cause.

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Such a confrontation would only further isolate Israel and the United States –which is likely to veto a motion on Palestinian statehood at the Security Council- and may have stark consequences for the Palestinians themselves, it said.

“After the initial exhilaration, Palestinians would be even more alienated, while extremists would try to exploit that disaffection,” it stated.

The daily said all sides shared the blame for the impasse that has existed ever since talks broke down in September 2010. According to the editorial, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was guilty of pandering to right-wing elements in his government and finding “excuses” to ignore dealing while the Palestinians who in turn were criticized for “giving up on diplomacy.”

It argued only direct talks between Israel and the Palestinians could effectively revive the peace process.  The best way of achieving such an outcome, it said, was for Washington to present a new outline for talks between the two with the backing of the international community.

“To have any chance of inducing the Palestinians to drop their statehood bid — and finally move the peace process forward — the United States and its partners should put a map and a deal on the table, with a timeline for concluding negotiations and a formal UN statehood vote,” it stated. “The Security Council and the Arab League need to throw their full weight behind it.”

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