11/30/2012: JAC Statement Regarding UN Vote on Palestinian Status
The United Nations voted November 30th to accord the Palestinians nonmember observer status at the United Nations, pursuant to the request of PA President Mahmoud Abbas. The resolution was approved by a vote of 138-9, with 41 abstentions. The Vatican is the only other entity in the UN that shares the same status.
The US and Israel expressed disapproval of the unilateral declaration and UN passage. The UN action is a victory for the Palestinian Authority, but it is largely symbolic. In order to be a state in more than name-only and to achieve a real improvement on the ground, Palestinians must (1) build the institutions and the infrastructure that comprise a successful state, and (2) sit down in direct negotiations with Israel to work out the terms of a secure, just and lasting peace. By turning to the UN, the PA has sidestepped the peace process.
JAC is disappointed in the Palestinian action and UN approval. JAC supports direct peace talks between the Palestinian Authority and Israel and a strong US role in restarting and facilitating this process.