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US vetoes resolution backing full UN membership for Palestine

The vote in the 15-member Security Council was 12 in favor, the United States opposed and two abstentions.
US vetoes resolution backing full UN membership for Palestine
Posted at 3:03 PM, Apr 18, 2024

The United States vetoed a widely backed U.N. resolution on Thursday that would have paved the way for full United Nations membership for the state of Palestine.

The vote in the 15-member Security Council was 12 in favor, the United States opposed and two abstentions.

The resolution would have recommended that the 193-member General Assembly, where there are no vetoes, approve Palestine becoming the 194th member of the United Nations. Some 140 countries have already recognized the state of Palestine, so its admission would have been approved.

Before the vote, U.S. deputy State Department spokesman Vedant Patel said the United States has “been very clear consistently that premature actions in New York — even with the best intentions — will not achieve statehood for the Palestinian people.”

This is the second Palestinian attempt for full membership and it comes as the war in Gaza has put the more than 75-year-old Israeli-Palestinian conflict at center stage.

SEE MORE: UN appeals for $2.8 billion for new Palestinian aid

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas first delivered the Palestinian Authority’s application for U.N. membership to then-Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in 2011. That initial bid failed because the Palestinians didn’t get the required minimum support of nine of the Security Council’s 15 members.

Under the U.N. Charter, the Security Council must recommend membership to the 193-member General Assembly, where there are no vetoes, for a final vote.

After the Palestinians’ initial bid for full U.N. membership was rejected, they went to the General Assembly and by more than a two-thirds majority succeeded in having their status raised from a U.N. observer to a non-member observer state in November 2012. That opened the door for the Palestinian territories to join the U.N. and other international organizations, including the International Criminal Court.


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