US veto of Palestinian membership in the UN amid the Gaza war


No surprise. This Thursday, April 18, the United States put an end to the Palestinians’ tiny hope of full membership in the UN, by vetoing in the Security Council a request castigated by their Israeli ally, in the midst of the war in Gaza. .

The Palestinian Authority of Mahmoud Abbas castigated the American veto, seeing it as “blatant aggression” which pushes the Middle East “to the brink of the abyss”. This veto “reveals the contradictions of American policy, which claims, on the one hand, to support the two-state solution (an independent Palestine alongside Israel, editor’s note), but on the other, prevents the implementation of this solution. at the UN, he added.

For several weeks, the Palestinians, who have enjoyed the lower status of “non-member observer state” since 2012, as well as the Arab countries, have implored the Council to accept that a “Palestinian state” already recognized by the majority of capitals takes its place. “legitimate” within the United Nations.

“Granting Palestine full membership in the United Nations would alleviate some of the historical injustice suffered by generations of Palestinians,” Ziad Abu Amr, a senior Palestinian Authority official, further pleaded before the Council.

The United States continues to support Israel

But in vain. The United States, which did everything to delay the vote, did not hesitate to use its right of veto which it regularly uses to protect its Israeli ally.

The draft resolution presented by Algeria which “recommends to the General Assembly that the State of Palestine be admitted as a member of the United Nations” obtained 12 votes for, 1 against and 2 abstentions (United Kingdom and Switzerland).

“Failure to act would be a serious and unforgivable mistake. Not waking up today would allow the continuation of injustice and impunity, an eternal shame. said Algerian Ambassador Amar Bendjama just before the vote.

But the admission of a State to the UN must receive a positive recommendation from the Council (at least 9 votes out of 15 in favor, without veto from a permanent member), then be approved by the General Assembly, by a majority of votes. two-thirds.

Palestinian demand deemed “immoral” by Israel
The United States has continued to repeat in recent weeks that its position “has not changed” since 2011, when the request for membership presented by the president of the Palestinian Authority came to naught in the face of American opposition. , before even arriving at the Council stage.

They believe that the UN is not the ideal venue for the recognition of a Palestinian state, which they believe should be the result of an agreement between Israel and the Palestinians. They also point out that US legislation would require them to reduce their UN funding in the event of Palestinian membership outside of such a bilateral agreement.

The last veto of a state’s membership in the UN dates back to 1976, when the Americans blocked entry into Vietnam.

The Israelis also virulently denounced the Palestinian initiative, criticizing the mere fact that the Council is considering the Palestinian request which their ambassador to the UN, Gilad Erdan, deemed “immoral”. “A peaceful state, what a joke!” » he said, in reference to the Charter of the United Nations which stipulates that one of the conditions of membership is to be a “peaceful” State.

The Israeli government opposes the two-state solution, supported by a large majority of the international community, including the United States. And the majority of the 193 UN member states (137 according to the Palestinian Authority count) unilaterally recognize a Palestinian state.

This article is originally published on


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