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Published: Friday September 23, 2011 MYT 5:14:00 PM

Nothing to lose in seeking full UN membership, says Palestine ambassador

KUALA LUMPUR: Palestinians believe they have nothing to lose bringing their plight for statehood to the United Nations, said its ambassador to Malaysia Abd Elaziz Abu Ghoush.

"We will lose nothing but we will gain morally...the people's struggle will once again be the focus of the whole world," he told reporters after giving a talk on Palestine Seeking Nationhood in the UN.

The Palestinian's struggle for statehood in a tiny portion of the land that used to be their country takes centre stage at the United Nations today.

President Mahmoud Abbas is due to speak at the general assembly and then formally submit the application for Palestine full membership in the world body to UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon Friday.

The US, a staunch supporter of Israel on any and every issue, has predictably said that it would veto the request for membership.

Since Israel was created on Palestinian land in 1948, more than 100,000 Palestinians have died resisting occupation, and over 10,000 are now suffering in Israeli jails, Abu Ghoush said.

He understood that some of the UN Security Council members were under pressure not to support the Palestinian application for full membership.

Palestine will require nine out of 15 votes from members of the UN Security Council to join the world body if there is no veto.

The five permanent members of the 15-member Security Council are the US, France, China and Russia. The rest who were voted in for a two-year term are Brazil, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Colombia, Gabon, Germany, India, Portugal, Lebanon, Nigeria and South Africa.

If it gets nine votes and the support of two-thirds of the member states of the UN, which means 128 out of 193 countries, and without any veto, Palestine can table its application for membership at the general assembly.

If the US uses its veto power, but there is enough support for Palestine, the application will be tabled in the general assembly for Palestine to be an observer state. Palestine is now classified as an observer entity. BERNAMA


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