'US will veto any Palestinian statehood bid at UN'

Daniel Shapiro, US ambassador to Israel, calls on Palestinians to return to direct negotiations without preconditions.

April 16, 2012 15:46
US ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro

US ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro 370. (photo credit: Courtesy Netanya Academic College)

The United States will continue to act against Palestinian attempts to gain recognition through the United Nations, and if necessary will use its veto to that end, US ambassador to Israel Daniel Shapiro said Monday.

Speaking at the Netanya Academic College, Shapiro said that there are no shortcuts to peace in the Middle East, and the Palestinians must return to direct negotiations with Israel without preconditions, on the basis of what was outlined by US President Barack Obama.

In an interview with Palestinian news agency Ma'an on Monday, Abbas blamed the stalled peace negotiations on Israeli settlement activity in the West Bank, adding that Israel is working towards maintaining the status quo.

The PA president is set to deliver a long-anticipated letter to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Tuesday, which will include a warning that the two-state solution could collapse unless Israel changes its current policies.

During his speech, Shapiro stated that the US cut the funding of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) after it recognized Palestine as a member-state.

Khaled Abu Toameh contributed to this report.

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