Support from the Europeans for Palestinian non-member 'state' status may derive partly from concern that Palestinians would view missiles, not diplomacy, as the way to sway Israel.
Ramallah, West Bank
A week after Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas appeared all but forgotten in the wake of the Gaza conflict, his bid to gain a global mandate for statehood at the United Nations today has gained momentum.
At least 150 of the United Nations’s 193 members, including France, Spain, Switzerland, Austria, and possibly even Britain, are expected to vote in favor of upgrading the Palestine Liberation Organization’s status to a non-member “state,” instead of a mere “observer.” And Germany, which many expected to be a sure "no" vote, announced today that it would abstain.
The upgrade, while largely symbolic, could give the PLO firmer footing on the international stage to push for a sovereign state alongside Israel.
The last-minute tide of international support, particularly from European countries, may have derived in part from concern that Palestinians would walk away from last week’s Gaza conflict with the impression that missiles, not diplomacy, are the way to get Israeli concessions. As part of the Nov. 21 cease-fire agreement, Israel agreed in principle to opening the crossings into Gaza, potentially easing the restrictions on goods and freedom of movement that Israel imposed when Hamas won elections in 2006.
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