Palestinians Compromise on UN-Observers Demand
The Palestinians dropped their call for UN observers to help end six months of violence and agreed instead to let the Security Council decide on measures to protect Palestinian civilians. But it wasn't clear whether the United States would accept the compromise, reported The Associated Press as published in Haaretz’s online edition.
The US, which is Israel's closest ally on the Security Council, had threatened to veto any resolution that referred to a UN force to protect Palestinians, said the agency.
AFP reported Tuesday morning, however, that the Security Council's deadline for finding consensus on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict passed with members still locked in informal talks at midnight Monday.
The council had given itself until the end of the day to see if it could find a common position on a draft resolution before the start of the Arab summit in Amman, Jordan, said the agency.
The mood of diplomats swung back and forth as the council went from full consultations of its 15 members to separate meetings of the caucus of the seven non-aligned countries and its four Western European states, and back again.
At one point, diplomats said there was a chance of reaching agreement on a text which would call on UN Secretary General Kofi Annan to use his good offices to try to get Israelis and Palestinians back to the negotiating table.
As midnight passed, the British and French ambassadors -- co-sponsors of the draft -- huddled with their counterparts from Bangladesh, Jamaica and the United States in a small room off the council chamber.
The Palestinian observer to the United Nations, Nasser al-Kidwa, was also present although he does not have a council seat, said AFP – Albawaba.com
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