As Congressional midterm elections approach, Republican representatives call on US president not to reward ‘Palestinian behavior,’ warn UN resolution on Palestinian state would hurt peace efforts
WASHINGTON – Republican members of the House of Representatives have written a letter to US President Barack Obama in which they urge him to veto any attempt to pass a Security Council resolution recognizing a Palestinian state, which they said would predetermine the results of peace negotiations.
A UN resolution would cause serious damage to peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians, they said.
The Republican representatives are blaming the president of causing the Palestinians to threaten to turn to the UN by publicly demanding Israel to halt settlement construction.
The letter was sent following recent reports on a Palestinian plan to turn to the UN for a vote on the establishment of a Palestinian state should direct talks reach a dead end.
It is estimated that the republicans will win a majority in the House of Representatives Tuesday at the Congressional midterm elections.
The letter noted that Israel’s decision to halt West Bank settlement construction for 10 months was not only a gesture of goodwill meant to encourage the Palestinians to resume negotiations, but was extremely unpopular with many in Israel.
It was stated that the Palestinians never conditioned direct talks with a freeze of settlement construction.
The republicans said that a UN resolution regarding a Palestinian state would have a devastating effect on peace prospects. By turning to the UN the Palestinians are trying to avoid meeting their commitments and advancing negotiations with Israel, they said. “The US must not reward such behavior,” the letter noted.
They also called Obama to support Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s demand from the Palestinians to recognize Israel as a Jewish state.