Abbas pushes for state along 1967 lines in ‘Times’ op-ed

PA president appeals to int'l community to support UN recognition of state after 20 years of failed talks with Israel.

mahmoud abbas_311 (photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
mahmoud abbas_311
(photo credit: Marc Israel Sellem)
Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas on Tuesday reiterated his intention to ask the United Nations in September to recognize a Palestinian state along the 1967 lines.
“Many are questioning what value there is to such recognition while the Israeli occupation continues,” Abbas said in an op-ed published in The New York Times.
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“Others have accused us of imperiling the peace process. We believe, however, that there is tremendous value for all Palestinians – those living in the homeland, in exile and under occupation.”
Abbas pointed out that the last time the question of Palestinian statehood took center stage at the General Assembly in November of 1947, “the question posed to the international community was whether our homeland should be partitioned into two states.”
Shortly after the General Assembly made its recommendation to do so, “Zionist forces expelled Palestinian Arabs to ensure a decisive Jewish majority in the future State of Israel, and Arab armies intervened,” he added. “War and further expulsions ensued.”
Abbas wrote that “minutes after the State of Israel was established on May 14, 1948, the United States granted it recognition.
Our Palestinian state, however, remains a promise unfulfilled.”
Abbas argued that Palestine’s admission to the UN would pave the way for the internationalization of the conflict as a legal matter, not just politically.
“It would also pave the way for us to pursue claims against Israel at the United Nations, human rights treaty bodies and the International Court of Justice,” he said.
Abbas cautioned against looking at the quest for recognition as a “stunt,” adding that “too many of our men and women have been lost for us to engage in such political theater.”
He added that negotiations remained the Palestinians’ first option, “but due to their failure, we are now compelled to turn to the international community to assist us in preserving the opportunity for a peaceful and just end to the conflict.”