Dr. Hanan Ashrawi, member of the Palestinian Liberation Organization's Executive Committee, reacts to Obama/Merkel statement.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has stated that if there is not sufficient progress in negotiations, the Palestinians plan to pursue recognition of Palestinian statehood in the United Nations this September.  The US has stated their opposition to this, and yesterday, President Obama and German Chancellor Andrea Merkel made a joint statement urging the Palestinians to stop that process because it was “unilateral.”

Palestinian Liberation Organization Executive Committee member Dr. Hanan Ashrawi disagreed, stating:

“Far from acting unilaterally, Palestinians are bringing their case for statehood before the United Nations, the world’s preeminent multilateral body. Self-determination and respect for the sovereignty of nations are principles enshrined in the United Nations Charter, making the UN a natural forum to resolve this issue.”

“You do not leave an occupied people at the mercy of those who occupy them and who act unilaterally in violation of international law by continuing to demolish homes, annex land, build settlements, erect apartheid walls and revoke IDs.

On the contrary, come September, we expect President Obama and Chancellor Merkel to support the involvement of the United Nations as a positive step forward in efforts to secure regional peace and safeguard stability, and to recognize that the greatest threat to regional peace and security is Israel’s refusal to respect Palestinian rights and international law.”     Read article

Meanwhile, pressure is building in the US to avert this bid for Palestinian statehood via the UN.  One bill being debated would withdraw funding from the UN if it recognizes a Palestinian state.  Read more   |    Read bill