Palestinians Officially Launch Bid for Statehood

The Palestinian Authority on Thursday officially launched its campaign to join the United Nations as a full member state, a move it hopes to achieve within just a few weeks.

In a letter addressed to UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s Ramallah office, Palestinian officials urged the leader of the international community to “exert all possible efforts toward the achievement of the Palestinian people’s just demands.”

The letter said the campaign would include a series of peaceful events leading up to the September 21 opening of the UN General Assembly. Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas will address the assembly two days later, according to the officials.

The official launch of the Palestinian campaign was announced amid reported U.S. Republican attempts to pressure U.S. President Barack Obama into thwarting the Palestinian move.

Representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, a conservative who chairs the House Foreign Affairs Committee, said earlier Wednesday that Obama should say clearly and publicly the United States will use its veto on the Security Council to block any Palestinian bid to gain UN membership.

Obama’s administration has been making diplomatic moves to try to head off the Palestinian plan to gain statehood recognition at the UN General Assembly.

For more, go to Haaretz.com

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Haaretz

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Palestinians Officially Launch Bid for Statehood

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