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Israeli FM meets ambassadors over Palestinian UN bid


09:57, November 12, 2012

JERUSALEM, Nov. 11 (Xinhua) -- Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman met Sunday with Israeli ambassadors to the European Union regarding Israel's response to the Palestinians' bid for upgrading their status at the United Nations.

The Palestinian National Authority (PNA) is expected to submit its application for upgrading their status at the United Nations later this month.

"For the past four years Israel approached the PNA many times with the intent of renewing direct negotiations, but the Palestinians chose to avoid the issue and blamed Israel for all their problems," Lieberman said during the meeting.

The Palestinians have "no interest" in resuming peace negotiations and instead prefer to "erode the Israeli position further and further," the foreign minister added.

Peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians came to a halt in 2010 due to Israel's ongoing settlement construction in the West Bank, a move condemned by the Israeli left-wing, the international community and the PNA.

Despite Lieberman's comments, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas declared Friday that the Palestinians are ready to resume negotiations and are striving for peace and denouncing violence against Israel.

In a meeting held two weeks ago between Lieberman and EU foreign policy chief Catherine Ashton, the foreign minister said Israel would fight the Palestinian bid "even if it means collapsing the PNA."

In September 2011, the PNA made its first bid to the United Nations, which was rejected later that month. According to previous reports and assessments, if the Palestinians are to make their appeal again, they can expect the support of 130 out of 193 UN member states.

On Nov. 2, U.S. government reiterated its opposition to a Palestinian bid to seek a non-member state status. "Our comment is not different than that we've been making for more than a year," U. S. State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said in a briefing.

The United States has adopted Israel's position regarding the PNA's UN bid and called on the Palestinians to gain statehood through peace negotiations and not through unilateral statements.

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