There are reason to question acts of the United Nations, but this is not one of them. It is suppose to be a democracy of states, and it has acted like one. Among the member states the US stands virtually alone on a vote that grants spokesman status to the Palestinian people, whom the US representative claims have no right to be heard. – Editor CECarlson
Popular Resistance tells us that within the United Nations, “146 out of 193 member states vote to affirm Palestine as the new chairman of the 134-member Group of 77, the largest single coalition of developing countries at the United Nations.” See Popular Resistance dot org.
Popular Resistance further tells us what most media would not consider important, that “The 146 included some of the strongest Western allies of the US, plus four of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council: UK, France, China and Russia.
“The only two countries that stood sheepishly by the US were Israel, its traditional client state, and Australia, a newcomer to the ranks of US supporters.
“The 15 abstentions included some of the usual suspects: Austria, Andorra, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Canada, Croatia, Czech Republic, Honduras, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Monaco, Poland, Slovakia and Tuvalu.
“The vote in the General Assembly on October 16 was, by all accounts, a humiliating defeat to the Trump administration which had moved the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, and cut $300 million from its contributions to the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) aiding Palestinian refugees.
“Both were decisions aimed at undermining Palestine at the United Nations. But the Palestinians pulled off a major victory despite the behind-the-scenes lobbying, both by the US and Israel, to thwart the Palestinians.
“At a ministerial meeting in late September, Palestine, which is a non-member state, was endorsed as the chairman of the Group of 77, beginning January of next year. The General Assembly vote was a ratification of that decision.”
Mouin Rabbani, Resident Senior Fellow at the Institute for Palestine Studies (IPS) at Washington DC, told IPS that “(particularly given the overwhelmingly lopsided nature of the vote), the election of Palestine as the new Chairman of the Group of 77 can only be interpreted as a pre-meditated and deliberate slap in the face to the United States by the international community.”
Following the vote, Ambassador Haley said the United States voted against the resolution granting the Palestinians privileges at the United Nations as chair of the “Group of 77” – again, a coalition of developing Member States at the UN.
“The United States does not recognize a Palestinian state, notes that no such state has been admitted as a UN Member State, and does not believe that the Palestinians are eligible to be admitted as a UN Member State.
“The U.S. strongly opposes the Palestinian election as Chair of the G77, as well as the so-called enabling resolution in the UN General Assembly,” added the outgoing envoy, who announced last week that she will resign her post by the end of the year.”
Haley continued, “The Palestinians are not a UN Member State or any state at all. The United States will continually point that out in our remarks at UN events led by the Palestinians.
The Palestinian ambassador Riyad Mansour said the General Assembly vote represents multilateralism at its best, with the wider membership supporting a resolution to enable the elected Chair of a group to perform its duties effectively.
He said, “It was an expression of respect for the decision of the Group of 77 and China to elect, by consensus, the State of Palestine as its chair for the year 2019,
“The General Assembly resolution not only ratified the ministerial decision but also provided Palestine with additional rights and privileges, including the right to make statements on behalf of the Group of 77 and China (including among representatives of major groups), as well as the right to submit proposals and amendments and introduce them on behalf of the Group of 77 and China, and the right to co-sponsor proposals and amendments.”
“The greater challenge is to translate these symbolic victories, important as they may be, into substantive achievements,” he declared.