US Pressures Foil UNSC Statehood Bid, Says Abbas

RAMALLAH, January 18, 2015 (WAFA) – President Mahmoud Abbas Sunday said that tremendous US pressures on United Nations Security Council’s member states were behind the failure of the Palestinian bid – aiming to set a three-year deadline to the Israeli occupation – which was presented to the United Nations Security Council on December 30, 2014.

During an interview with the Egypt-based Bawaba News, Abbas said the Palestinian Authority would end security coordination with Israel if the Palestinian bid, to be presented to the UNSC probably in the next few days, is hampered once again.

Abbas also hinted at dissolving the PA in case the US and other permanent UNSC members continue to put obstacles in the way of ending the Israeli occupation in the occupied Palestinian Territories within the 1967 borders.

He said that Nigeria, which abstained to vote, had faced massive US-led pressure primarily concerning security aid and the war on Boko Haram.

Abbas’ interview came as Israel continues to halt the transfer of around half a billion shekels ($127.6 million) in tax revenues collected on behalf of the PA, in response to the Palestinian accession to the International Criminal Court (ICC).

The Israeli move has hindered PA’s ability to pay for civil servant wages and pensions, resulting in noticeable downturn in the economy.

Abbas said that if the Arab safety net is activated and the monthly $100 million were provided, as well as the tax revenues and the international, Palestinians would be able to stand the Israeli pressures.

As many sides criticized Abbas’ decision to address the UNSC without guaranteeing the number of countries supporting Palestine, Abbas explained that initially 14 countries were confirmed to vote in favor with the bid, however, US pressures brought the number down to nine. He said that Palestine addressed the UNSC with a united Arab consent.

The president also referred to a conversation with US Secretary of State John Kerry during which the latter told Abbas that joining the ICC is a “nuclear option”.

Abbas spoke of threats which he received personally. He said sides, which he didn’t mention, “reminded me of the late Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat and I am ready to all options in order to fulfill the Palestinian dream in statehood.”

Abbas commented on the Palestinian participation in the French march to condemn the attacks in France, saying “France is a friend that continuously supports the Palestinian rights in all international forums. Do not forget its last stance regarding the Palestinian bid at UNSC.”

He added, “France has challenged the US and voted in favor against what Tel Aviv and Washington wanted. It also voted in favor with the Palestinian bid in 2012 for an observer state at the UN.”

Abbas reiterated the PA’s rejection of terrorism and confirmed that his participation followed receiving an invitation from the French President François Hollande.