Middle East

Palestinians warn US not to veto anti-settlement resolution

Reuters/Ismail Zaydah

Palestinian negotiator Nabil Shaath warned that the US risks losing its credibility if it vetoes a UN Security Council resolution calling for a halt to Israeli settlement building.


"If you use the veto against this resolution, you will forever lose what's left of your credibility as a sponsor of the peace process," Shaath said on Monday in Doha. 

US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton has not clarified whether Washington plans to veto the resolution.

Dossier: Gaza 2009

"We don't see action at the UN or any other forum as being helpful in bringing about this desired outcome,” she said last week.

But Shaath said 14 members of the 15-member UN Security Council have told the Palestinians they will vote for the resolution, with the US as the only exception.

The draft resolution against Israeli construction in the occupied Palestinian territories and annexed east Jerusalem was formally put to the Security Council last week with Lebanon, Brazil and South Africa as sponsors.

Permanent members of the Security Council, including the United States,
have the right to veto UN resolutions.

Shaath also criticised Al-Jazeera for publishing leaked documents from peace negotiations with Israel.

The documents reveal major concessions by the Palestinian leadership on the issues of  east Jerusalem and the right of return of refugees.

The documents do exist but are non-binding, and they contained remarks by Palestinian officials that were “fragmented and taken out of context”, Shaath said.

“When we reach a full agreement, even that agreement will be non-binding until it is presented to a referendum," he added.


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