October 19, 2011
UN Security Council’s membership committee said Tuesday a report of its discussion on the Palestinian application for membership would be ready next month.The report would be presented to the 15-nation council in early November by Nigerian Ambassador Joy Ogwu, who is chairing the committee in her role as president of the council in October.
European diplomats said the committee had finished discussion on the issue of a Palestinian state, the first of three criteria demanded by the council before it would grant UN membership to the Palestinians.
The committee will discuss in coming weeks the two other criteria, which call for a determination that it is a peaceful country making the application and that the country can fulfill obligations under the United Nations Charter, which is the world organization’s constitution.
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas submitted the membership application on September 23 when he attended the UN General Assembly in New York.
But hopes for a quick approval by the council were dashed, as the quartet for the Middle East peace process has called on the Palestinians to return to negotiations with Israel to work out a two-state solution as part of the final settlement in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
The quartet, composed of the UN, the European Union, the U.S. and Russia, said negotiations should resume within one month, from September 24, and for both Israelis and the Palestinians to achieve a comprehensive settlement within 12 months. Indirect talks are set to start on October 26 in Jerusalem.