(photo credit: Shahar Ezran)
The Palestinians are ready to seek statehood recognition with Jerusalem as its capital, the Palestinian Authority envoy to the United Nations Riyad Mansour told the United Nations Security Council on Tuesday.
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In a dress rehearsal for the expected vote over Palestinian statehood set to take place at the United Nations in September, Mansour told the council his people could not be held in waiting much longer.
“With international political and financial support this plan has reached its objectives as acknowledged by the international community,” he said. “We have completed our responsibilities and are ready to govern ourselves. “
He added: “We cannot keep waiting for Israel to negotiate with good faith.”
Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations Ron Prosor, speaking after Mansour, told the Security Council that security and recognition of Israel as a Jewish State are the two linchpin issues that must be acknowledged by Palestinians in order to reach a final agreement and two-state solution.
Prosor said that he supported a two-state solution, with a Palestinian
state residing "alongside and not instead of the Jewish state." That
Palestinian state, the ambassador added, must be demilitarized and
supported by a strong education system, halting teachings of hatred and
The Israeli ambassador rejected any unilateral move by the Palestinians,
including seeking state recognition at the UN General Assembly, and
dismissed such efforts as an attempt to bypass negotiations with Israel.
Prosor said such efforts would be futile for Palestinians, saying only
bilateral negotiations presented a solution.
"To the Palestinians I also issue a call," Prosor said. "Take Israel’s outstretched hand. Seize the opportunities before us to advance down the real road toward peace – a road of solutions not resolutions; dialogue not monologue; and direct negotiations not unilateral declarations."
"Whether the Palestinians bring forward a resolution in the General Assembly or by invoking the 'Uniting for Peace' resolution it is clear that the Palestinians are not united and are far from united for peace," Prosor said.
The Israeli ambassador added, "There is much uncertainty about the future Palestinian government: its acceptance of the Quartet conditions, the peace process, control of its security forces, and many other questions. It will take at least a year until after the Palestinian elections next year before it is clear what Palestinian unity really means."
Prosor also commented on Iran and instability in
the Middle East saying, "Last month’s panel of experts report made
that Iran continues to pursue nuclear weapons capabilities, in complete
disregard of the will of the international community. New information
shows Iran’s intention to install uranium centrifuges at its facility in
Qom – a facility that was concealed for years from the IAEA. Such
behavior does not just endanger the Middle East, or a specific group of
countries. It endangers us all."