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Palestine as UN Topic at 1 pm, Move to Join ICC Before Then?

By Matthew Russell Lee

UNITED NATIONS, July 9., updated -- Palestine will be the topic of a meeting in the office of the president of the UN Security Council  at 1 pm on July 9, diplomats told Inner City Press, one of them adding, "You may hear something before then." 

  The reference was to Palestine moving to apply to the International Criminal Court. Things are moving fast; meanwhile the UN Security Council at 10 am on July 9 went forward with a regularly scheduled closed-door meeting about Lebanon.

  The Council had considered continuing negotiation on Syria humanitarian aid at 3 pm on July 9, but an outgoing diplomat said the World Cup semi-final between Netherlands and Argentina postponed that.

Update: the Security Council Presidency tells Inner City Press that not meeting at 3 pm about Syria humanitarian access is NOT related to the World Cup semi-final, contrary to what the outgoing diplomat said. Duly noted. And Secretary General Ban Ki-moon is now set to brief about the Middle East at 4:30 pm.

  Still, an already delayed negotiation on the General Assembly's annual resolution about the International Criminal Court was set for 2 pm rather than later. Negotiations are being "facilitated by the Netherlands," sources told Inner City Press. And so it goes at the UN.

Meanwhile as Inner City Press reported on July 7, the issue of Hamas has been raised in UN negotiations of a “ministerial” text to accompany the High Level segment of the Economic and Social Council.

There is a previously agreed Paragraph 24 about removing obstacles to development for people living occupation, in the UN phrase. It was agreed to last year.

This year the US, Israel and Canada have proposed a new Paragraph 25 essentially about Hamas, a source exclusively informed Inner City Press, saying if “people living under occupation” is in, the anti-Hamas language should be included too. Only at the UN.

As Inner City Press reported last week, the US, Israel and Canada stood alone, joined in one of two votes by Palau, in casting negative ballots on language calling on Israel to pay the UN back for damage in Qana in 1996.

Also July 7 in negotiations of a General Assembly resolution about the International Criminal Court, sources exclusively tell Inner City Press, there were major arguments about Secretary General Ban Ki-moon's implementation of language urging that “non-essential” contacts with ICC indictees be avoided.

As Inner City Press reported, last July the head of UN Peacekeeping Herve Ladsous met with ICC-indictee Omar al Bashir of Sudan, without even explaining why, or informing the ICC or its Prosecutor Fatou Bensouda. We'll have more on this.


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