Abbas Weighs Unilateral Declaration of Palestinian State

(AP) Salah Nasrawi and Karin Laub - Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Saturday sought Arab backing for possible fallback options in case peace talks with Israel collapse, including urging the U.S. to unilaterally recognize a Palestinian state. In recent months, some of Abbas' advisers have floated the idea of asking the UN Security Council for unilateral recognition of a Palestinian state in the West Bank, Gaza and east Jerusalem. Abbas adviser Saeb Erekat said Abbas asked the Arab League on Saturday to help persuade the Obama administration to unilaterally recognize such a state. If the Americans reject such a request, the Palestinians might take up the issue with the Security Council, nonetheless, Erekat said. But Washington would likely veto Security Council action. The U.S. opposes a unilateral Palestinian declaration of statehood. The long-standing U.S. position is that statehood should come through negotiations with the Israelis.

2010-10-11 09:09:47

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