Palestinians to Ask UN to Set Deadline for Ending Occupation

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An Israeli border policeman at a checkpoint in Hebron, March 15, 2015.Credit: Reuters

Saeb Erekat, secretary general of the Palestine Liberation Organization’s steering and monitoring committee, announced Sunday that the PLO and Arab League are preparing a motion for the UN Security Council that sets a deadline for ending Israel’s occupation of the West Bank.

At a press conference in the Palestinian embassy in Cairo, Erekat said that alongside this proposal, Palestinians will seek international protection in the Security Council as well the establishment of a commission of inquiry into the current violence.

Erekat said he arrived in Cairo straight from Amman to update the Arab League secretary general Nabil Elaraby and Egyptian Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry on his talks with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Saturday.

A senior Palestinian official told Haaretz that the Palestinian leadership is aware of the criticism of it in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, adding that reaching understandings on the Al-Aqsa mosque, as Kerry and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu are seeking, would be insufficient. The official said the Palestinian leadership could not present such arrangements as a diplomatic achievement to its public in light of the violent discontent and Israeli crackdown in the West Bank and the Palestinian neighborhoods of Jerusalem.

“The leadership is aware that the main issue is the occupation and its repercussions, and will try to use the recent events to present clear demands to the UN and international community, especially the Security Council decision to end the occupation and establish an international commission of inquiry that would examine the circumstances that led to the current violence.”

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