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U.S. in "intensive diplomacy" to block Palestinians' statehood bid: Clinton

(Xinhua)

09:49, September 20, 2011

NEW YORK, Sept. 19 (Xinhua) -- U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said here on Monday that her country is still engaged in " extremely intensive diplomacy" to block the Palestinians' unilateral bid for statehood at the United Nations.

Earlier on Monday, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas informed UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon of his intention to submit an application for membership on Friday at the world body.

"We are engaged in extremely intensive ongoing diplomacy, reaching out not only to the parties, but also to those involved and who are here for the UN General Assembly," Clinton told reporters as she began talks with Japanese Foreign Minister Koichiro Gemba.

"We continue to believe and are pressing the point that the only way to a two-state solution, which is what we support and want to see happen, is through negotiations," the top U.S. envoy added. "No matter what does or doesn't happen this week, it will not produce the kind of result that everyone is hoping for."

The process of achieving statehood begins with Abbas submitting an application to the secretary-general, which the UN chief will review and submit to the Security Council, should it meet technical requirements.

If their bid fails at the Security Council, where the Obama administration has vowed to use its veto power, the Palestinians could bring their case to the General Assembly where there is no veto and they have widespread support.

The Palestinians would only be able to be elevated to the status of non-member observer state from current permanent observer at the General Assembly, but would have access to UN bodies and have more leverage in future dealings with Israel.

The threatened veto on the part of the United States risks alienating the Arab world at a time when the region is witnessing turmoil and anti-Israel sentiment is running high.

Last September, the Obama administration brokered direct talks between the Israelis and the Palestinians in Washington, which broke down only weeks later due to Israel's refusal to extend a freeze on settlement building in the West Bank.

President Barack Obama is scheduled to meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on the sidelines of the General Assembly, while the latter called on Monday for a meeting with Abbas in New York to restart "direct negotiations."

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Hammad Sethi at 2011-11-0494.197.127.*
The reality about Western Christian so-called secularism, respect for human rights, democracy, and freedom is now out in the open for the whole International community to witness.
  

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