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Abbas at the UN: An Exercise in Futility

When Abbas comes to speak to the Security Council, he’s going to, apart from the usual slurs about apartheid and ethnic cleansing that he repeats every time and coming down on the British for the Balfour Declaration, he’s basically going to ask the UN to accept a Palestinian state, something which the UN refused to do two or three years ago, simply because the Palestinians couldn’t prove that they have the requisites of statehood according to international law. Then, the Security Council, which needs to accept this, refused to accept it.

He’ll also ask that any future negotiations not be handled by the United States, but be handled on an international basis by the Europeans and other states, which is something that has never succeeded whenever there’s been an international type of conference or internationalization of the conflict. And clearly, neither the United States nor Israel would agree to this, and it takes two to tango. So I don’t think anything concrete will come out of this statement by Abu Mazen, by Mahmoud Abbas, apart from just expressing himself, because the United Nations and the international community is the only place where he has any following that regard him seriously, because in his own borders nobody really takes him seriously.

About Amb. Alan Baker

Amb. Alan Baker is Director of the Institute for Contemporary Affairs at the Jerusalem Center and the head of the Global Law Forum. He participated in the negotiation and drafting of the Oslo Accords with the Palestinians, as well as agreements and peace treaties with Egypt, Jordan, and Lebanon. He served as legal adviser and deputy director-general of Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs and as Israel’s ambassador to Canada.
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