General Assembly President: US Could Veto Palestinian Statehood

Obama Condemns Calls for Palestinian Statehood as Unrealistic

Efforts by the Palestinian Authority to establish a Palestinian state will be entirely impossible, according to UN General Assembly President Joseph Deiss, who insists that the general assembly cannot recognize a nation if any member of the UN Security Council vetos it.

This makes such efforts a waste of time, as the United States holds a permanent veto power at the UNSC and would surely use it to block a Palestinian state. President Obama today condemned the notion of Palestinian statehood as entirely “unrealistic,” saying it could only become one if Israel agrees.

Which given the current state of affairs in Israel is likely impossible. Though some members of the current right-far-right government have suggested tepid support for a Palestinian state (with no military or borders), a number of officials also reject the notion on general principle.

Indeed, a number of Israeli and US attorneys are also arguing that a Palestinian state is illegal under any conditions. They are claiming that the League of Nations deal in 1922 gave Israel legal control over massive amounts of territory, including all of the lands conquered in 1967. They also claim the 1949 Armistice did not preclude Israel conquering additional territory and that the “1967 borders do not exist and have never existed.”

The United Nations imprimatur is assumed by many nations to be needed for statehood, but the ability of nations to marshal a veto against new states has left a growing number of de facto nation-states operating outside of this mechanism, and with no hope of securing UN membership. In addition to blocking Palestine, the United States has also vowed to block the UN recognition of both South Ossetia and Abkhazia, which seceded from Georgia in the wake of the brief Russo-Georgian War. Russia, for its part, is also blocking the recognition of Kosovo.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.