The Palestinians will go forward with a bid for full membership of the UN, after Mahmud Abbas, the chairman of the Palestine Liberation Organisation and president of the Palestinian Authority (PA), delivered a key speech in Ramallah on Friday. Describing a "sovereign, independent state" as the "legitimate right" of the Palestinian people, Abbas outlined the details of the bid, which will be made via a direct request to the UN Security Council (UNSC).
"We are going to the Security Council," Abbas said during the speech. "We need to have full membership in the United Nations ... we need a state, and we need a seat at the UN."
According to Abbas, the Palestinians needed to "take on the legal status of the occupation, not of Israel itself". He is expected to hand in an application in person to Ban Ki-moon, the UN secretary-general, on Monday, ahead of the UN General Assembly's 66th session.
"We have been willing to take part in serious negotiations," Abbas said. "But we received nothing from the Israeli government except wasting time and imposing facts on the ground."