Abbas gives speech marking Yasser Arafat's death 370 (R).
(photo credit: Mohamad Torokman/Reuters)
The magnitude of Israel’s response to the Palestinian Authority’s bid to gain
recognition at the United Nations a non-member observer state will depend on
what PA President Mahmoud Abbas does once he obtains that status, diplomatic
officials said Sunday.
The officials were echoing remarks National
Security Council head Yaakov Amidror said in a Meet the Press interview on
Saturday. Amidror did not detail what action Israel would take, beyond saying
that it could not “accept a unilateral action that breaks the rules of the
Amidror said the move in the General Assembly, unlike the PA’s
unsuccessful attempt in 2011 to go through the Security Council and gain
entrance into the UN as a member state, was “mostly symbolic.”
have to wait and see what he does with it, and then act,” Amidror said, refusing
to even reveal what possible reactions were in Israel’s
Diplomatic officials said that Israel has been urged by the EU
and the US not to “overreact” to the Palestinian bid, and to wait and see what
Abbas did once the resolution passed before taking any “irreversible”
Israel’s possible responses have ranged from the mild – such as
withholding PA tax revenue – to the harsh: annexing the large settlement
One voice in the government advocating rupturing ties with Abbas and the PA over the move is Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman,
who for months has accused Abbas of engaging in diplomatic terror against
Israel, and has advocated severing all ties with him.
convene a meeting Monday of senior Foreign Ministry officials to discuss Abbas’s
One ministry official clarified, however, that this meeting will
deal more with Israel’s attempts to convince the world’s democracies not to
support the move, than with deciding what Israel’s response will be – a decision
that will be made at the cabinet level.
European diplomats have been in
discussion with the PA about securing a commitment not to take Israel to the
International Criminal Court if it achieves non-member statehood status in the
UN, in order to mollify Israel and ensure a tamer response from Jerusalem.