The United Nations is being warned about a “disingenuous and illegitimate” attempt to create a new nation – Palestine – without having any of the internationally accepted components at hand.
The move came from Palestinian Authority chief Mahmoud Abbas, “in a fit of pique,” after President Donald Trump announced he would allow the implementation of a 20-year-old law in the U.S. that formally recognizes Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
In response, Abbas claimed that the PA intended to accede to 22 different international conventions and agreements.
However, the European Center for Law and Justice, in a letter to U.N. chief Antonio Guterres, pointed out that that’s simply not how things are done.
“For a variety of reasons, including, but not limited to, the PA’s inability to accede to such treaties as a ‘state’ (since it fails to meet minimal criteria for statehood under customary international law), its wholly disingenuous and illegitimate reasons for signing on to such agreements, and its clear breach of the Oslo Accords in doing so, Palestinian accession to such agreements must be rejected,” the center told the U.N.
The letter this week, signed by Jay Sekulow, who also heads the American Center for Law and Justice, urged the U.N. to “disqualify” the PA from signing treaties.
The Trump decision regarding Jerusalem, it explained, “was a lawful act by a sovereign state, subject to neither censure nor approval by foreign powers.”
But the Palestinian Authority still has obtained no action “with respect to the creation or existence of a Palestinian ‘State,’” it said.
“Under the U.N. Charter, the General Assembly has no lawful authority whatsoever to create or recognize a ‘state.’ The U.N. does not officially recognize states or declare statehood; such actions are the responsibility of individual governments,” it continued.
“Further, when the states of the world gather together to make decisions as members of the U.N. General Assembly, they are bound by the explicit terms of the U.N. Charter as to what they may do,” it continued, meaning it would be out of bounds for the U.N. to create a “state.”
The letter pointed out even the Palestinians accept that, as Abbas recently “announced … .2017 would be ‘the year of the independent Palestinian state.’”
“PA officials have made it clear that their signing of these international conventions has nothing to do with a genuine interest in upholding the norms contained within them, but is merely being done in reprisal for the United States’ decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and move its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem,” the letter explained.
After all, the same thing happened in 2014, when the PA was “upset” over Israel’s decisions regarding the release of prisoners.
If a non-qualified participant is allowed to sign a treaty, “the meaning and value of such agreements will be forever cheapened and tarnished.”
“It is clear from its actions that the PA is intent on conducting its affairs as if a Palestinian ‘State’ already exists, in the hope that nations and other international actors will ignore the PA’s utter failure to meet even the most basic requirements of statehood under customary international law,” the letter said.
Allowing a non-state actor to play the role of a nation is no more than appeasement and “is both illogical and dangerous and serves as a powerful disincentive for the PA to engage in the good-faith negotiations needed to actually resolve the issues.”
Officials with the ECLJ explained the letter calls out what the PA and its supporters are trying to do now, that “they have been unable to do anywhere and everywhere else: unilaterally create a would-be Palestinian ‘state.’”
Back in 2014, the ECLJ explained, after walking away from negotiations with Israel, the PA decided to sign a large group of international treaties and conventions all at once. Their reasoning was that since treaties and conventions can only be signed by states, their being allowed to sign them is now proof that they are a state.
“That’s not how treaties work. That’s not how international law works. That’s not how any of this works,” the ECLJ said.
“The very act of allowing non-state actors to ‘sign’ on to treaties and conventions makes a mockery of international law. It not only belittles the important topics of those treaties, but it weakens their enforcement and cheapens their effectiveness.”
While the conventions regarding suppressing nuclear war, the sale of children, child prostitution, trafficking, organized crime and more, are important, “These essential and imperative conventions are being used by the PA to score cheap political points. These conventions and treaties represent an international response to real life horrors like human trafficking, rape, child prostitution, and nuclear war; and this flippant use of them to score would-be political points must not be allowed.