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Palestinians plan to get membership in 16 UN bodies: official

11-02-2011 22:48 BJT

RAMALLAH, Nov. 2 (Xinhua) -- A Palestinian diplomat on Wednesday revealed a Palestinian plan to obtain full membership in 16 United Nations organizations after Palestine was accepted by the U.N. Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

"We have started our studies and preparations to do so," said Ibrahim Khrisheh, the Palestinian envoy to the U.N. Human Rights Council. "The achievement to join the UNESCO opens the door for Palestine to become a member in all of the United Nations agencies. "

The Palestinians are now pushing to join the World Trade Organization and the International Criminal Court, according to Khrisheh.

However, the Palestinian leadership has not yet ordered any actual move, Khrisheh told Voice of Palestine Radio. The Palestinian leadership is apparently assessing reactions to Monday 's voting at the UNESCO, which granted Palestine the full membership.

The United States cut its funding to the UNESCO after the admission of Palestine and Israel started a series of measures, including withholding Palestinian tax revenues and approving more settlement building in East Jerusalem.

For the Palestinians, getting the membership at the UNESCO bolsters their leadership's efforts to get a full membership in the United Nations. In September, PNA President Mahmoud Abbas submitted a request to the U.N. Security Council for statehood.

Israel and the United States oppose the Palestinian bid for the U.N. membership, saying that a Palestinian state should come through negotiations.

Negotiations between Israel and the PNA stopped last year over a dispute on Jewish settlement building.

Editor:Xiong Qu |Source: Xinhua

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