Obama will not use his final days in office to push an anti-Israel resolution at the UNSC, US officials stated.
US ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro stated Thursday that President Barack Obama will not support a resolution at the United Nations Security Council (UN) adopting a unilateral move that would recognize the state of Palestine or force a settlement on Israel.
Shapiro said that the US has” always opposed unilateral propositions. This is a long-term policy. If there will ever be a unilateral proposal, we have opposed it in the past and will do so in the future.”
Shapiro made the statement on the background of resurfacing reports that Obama may use his last days in office launch a last-ditch diplomatic initiative and push through a one-sided anti-Israel resolution at the UNSC.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called on Obama on Monday not to make any “drastic” changes to long-standing American policies vis-à-vis Israel during the last weeks of his administration.
Citing White House officials, AP reported that Obama has nearly ruled out any major effort to put pressure on Israel over stalled peace negotiations with the Palestinians.
Frustrated by the lack of progress, Obama for more than a year had considered supporting a UN resolution laying out parameters for such a deal. Although the goal would supposedly be to impart fresh urgency to the declining peace process, such a step would have been perceived as constraining Israel’s negotiating hand while strengthening the Palestinians’ argument on the world stage.
Avoiding a last-minute move also allows President-elect Donald Trump to approach the Israeli-Palestinian issue unencumbered by a move made by his predecessor.
For years, the US has officially opposed any attempts by Palestinians to seek recognition for statehood or allow international bodies like the UN to impose solutions.
“Our view hasn’t changed that we believe that the preferred path for the Palestinians to achieve statehood is through direct negotiations that will lead to a just, lasting and comprehensive peace based on a two-state solution,” State Department spokesman John Kirby said earlier this week.
The House this week passed a bipartisan non-binding bill urging Obama to continue blocking resolutions that attempt to impose preconditions on a peace deal.
By: Aryeh Savir, World Israel News
AP contributed to this report.