Hamas Slams Abbas' Plan to Resubmit UN Bid as Playing With Fate of Palestinian People

Abbas said Sunday that he was discussing the move with Jordan.

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In this Tuesday April 1, 2014 photo, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, joined by Palestinian chief peace negotiator Saeb Erekat, signs an application to UN agencies, in Ramallah.
In this Tuesday April 1, 2014 photo, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, joined by Palestinian chief peace negotiator Saeb Erekat, signs an application to UN agencies, in Ramallah.Credit: AP

Hamas said Monday that it was opposed to the Palestinian Authority's plan to resubmit its resolution to the UN Security Council calling for the establishment of a Palestinian state, after it failed to win enough votes last week.

Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zuhri said the decision carried no political or diplomatic significance, and that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas and the PA leadership were playing with the fate of the Palestinian people.

Abbas said Sunday that he was discussing the move with Jordan, which will remain a member of the Security Council while several other countries with revolving membership were replaced over the New Year.

The Palestinians hope these states will be more sympathetic to their resolution demanding an Israeli withdrawal from occupied territories and independence by 2017, although the United States would be all but certain to vote no again, as it did last week.

"We didn't fail, the UN Security Council failed us. We'll go again to the Security Council, why not? Perhaps after a week," Abbas told officials at a cultural conference in the West Bank city of Ramallah, the Palestinian seat of self-rule government.

"We are studying it, and we will study this with our allies and especially Jordan ... to submit the resolution again, a third time or even a fourth time."

In the UN vote last Tuesday, the Palestinian draft received eight votes in favor, including France, Russia and China, two against and five abstentions, among them Britain and Nigeria. Australia joined the United States in voting against the measure.

However, any resubmission would face almost certain failure. The United States has veto power as one of the council's five permanent members and has pledged to block Abbas's plan, calling it one-sided and unproductive.

Abbas signed onto 22 international conventions the next day, including the Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court, giving the court jurisdiction over crimes committed on Palestinian lands and opening up an unprecedented confrontation between the veteran peace negotiator and Israel.

In retaliation for the move to the ICC, Israel announced on Saturday that it would withhold 500 million shekels ($125 million) in monthly tax revenues that it collects on the Palestinians' behalf, in a blow to Abbas's cash-strapped government.

"Now there are sanctions – that's fine. There's an escalation – that's fine ... but we're pushing forward," Abbas said.

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