Palestinian bid to fly flag at U.N. headquarters set to pass


(JTA) — The Palestinian Authority’s draft resolution for raising its flag at the United Nations headquarters will easily pass a vote by the U.N. General Assembly, diplomats said.

Israel and the United States oppose the Palestinian Authority’s bid to have its flag at the United Nations headquarters in New York, but diplomats said that the 193-member General Assembly would likely approve the Palestinian draft resolution when it convenes on Sept. 10, the French news agency AFP reported Friday.

Ahead of the vote, Israel’s U.N. ambassador, Ron Prosor, wrote a letter to U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and Sam Kutesa, the General Assembly’s president, to block the move, which would break with the U.N. practice of flying only the flags of member states.

The Palestinian move was an attempt to “score easy and meaningless points” Prosor wrote, adding that this was “not the path to statehood, this is not the way for peace,” AFP reported.

The Palestinian observer mission to the United Nations on Wednesday appealed to the world body’s member states to support its call to fly its flag at U.N. headquarters as a “non-member observer state”, a status obtained in 2012 following a General Assembly vote, also over Israeli and U.S. objections.

The U.S. State Department on Tuesday described the Palestinian flag initiative as “counterproductive.”

Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas is scheduled to visit the U.N. headquarters on Sept. 30.

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