UNGA adopts resolution backing Palestinian membership

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The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) on Friday overwhelmingly backed a Palestinian bid to become full member of the international organization.

The UNGA adopted a resolution with 143 votes in favor and nine against, including the US and Israel, while 25 countries abstained. It does not give the Palestinians full UN membership, but simply recognizes them as qualified to join.

The resolution, tabled by the Arab group along with other countries, “determines that the State of Palestine … should therefore be admitted to membership” and it “recommends that the Security Council reconsider the matter favorably.”

It also renewed backing for the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination including the right of having an independent Palestinian state.

The resolution called on the international community to exert renewed and concerted efforts to end the Israeli occupation that started in 1967 and to reach a peaceful, just and lasting settlement to the Palestinian-Israeli conflict in accordance with the international law and relevant UN resolutions.

The final list of rights and privileges in the draft annex includes giving Palestine the right to speak on all issues not just those related to the Palestinians and Middle East, the right to propose agenda items and reply in debates, and the right to be elected as officers in the assembly’s main committees.