Tuesday, December 4, 2012

The fine print of Palestinian statehood

What does the UN fine print - which promoted Palestine as a non-member observer state - really mean?

By Nadia Hijab

"Congratulations are raining as friends of the Palestinians respond with delight to the United Nations' resounding "Yes!" to Palestine's non-member observer state status as of November 29, 2012. But before giving free rein to their excitement, the Palestinian people - and their allies - should read the actual text of the resolution.

Many Palestinians did not read the Oslo Accords Israel and the Palestine Liberation Organisation (PLO) signed in the 1990s. If they had, they might have noticed that the Accords did not mention international law and human rights, did not provide for a state and did not even mention the "occupation". Plus, the accords tied the Palestinian economy into knots that Israel could tighten or loosen at will.

The same leadership that signed those accords now believes the UN upgrade will put the Palestinian struggle for self-determination, freedom, equality and justice back on track. 
Perhaps. There may be some openings yet the reasons for apprehension are legion, as is shown by a reading of the text......

What is truly alarming is that, despite repeated assertions by the Palestinian leadership that they are determined to protect the rights of Palestinian refugees, the brief reference to the cornerstone UN Resolution 194 (III) is buried in the preambular paragraphs.....

Another worrying factor is the repeated references to a peace process so discredited that it is long past time to bury and not to praise it. ...."

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