Israel works to undermine Palestinian/Arab UN initiative

Saleh Naami in Gaza, Sunday 19 Dec 2010

The Israeli government seeks to obstruct efforts for a UN resolution against settlement expansion in occupied territories

The Israeli government is on alert to thwart a joint Arab-Palestinian effort to seek a global consensus against settlement construction, leading to boycotts and sanctions.

The Arab-Palestinian initiative will also seek a UN Security Council (UNSC) resolution calling for a freezing of settlement construction. 

Official sources in the ministry of foreign affairs conveyed Israeli fears that America would be in no rush to use its veto and thwart the Arab proposal, according to the Israeli daily Haaretz.

The sources pointed out that the Arab countries met at the end of last week to coordinate a united initiative. They also expressedserious concern about the possibility for them to convince the international community to implement an economic boycott of the settlements.

They insinuated that the prime minister's office and the ministry of foreign affairs are both intensifying their efforts to foil the Arab initiative. Consequently, the chairman of the department of international organizations in the ministry of foreign affairs has asked for the issue not to be leaked and a media blackout to be implemented.

The Arab-Palestinian plan is seen as another Palestinian Authority attempt to bypass negotiations with Israel, itself a rather threatening development according to the forums.

Israeli embassies in UNSC member countries have been instructed to foil the Arab-Palestinian joint initiative and prevent the Security Council from implementing a resolution. The issue is complicated for Israel by America’s public objection to new settlement construction.

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