Middle East

Palestinian draft peace plan put before UN Security Council

A protester holds Palestinian flag in front of Israeli soldier during protest against Jewish settlements between Jerusalem and Jericho. 28 Nov 2014 Image copyright AFP
Image caption Palestinians want a state in the West Bank and Gaza, with East Jerusalem as its capital

A draft resolution setting out a Palestinian timetable for a peace deal with Israel has been submitted to the UN Security Council.

The document, presented by Jordan, calls for a deal within one year and Israeli withdrawal from occupied territories by the end of 2017.

Jordan has indicated it will not seek a quick vote, allowing further talks and a possible bid to secure US support.

The US has vetoed previous resolutions it considers hostile to Israel.

The text of the draft says a negotiated solution should be based on several parameters including the boundary between Israel and the West Bank that existed before the 1967 Six Day War, security agreements, and "Jerusalem as the shared capital of the two states".

It urges both parties "to abstain from any unilateral and illegal actions, including settlement activities, that could undermine the viability of a two-state solution".

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has sought reassurances that the US - Israel's ally - would block any efforts to adopt the resolution.


By Yolande Knell, BBC News, Jerusalem

Palestinian officials say their new initiative at the UN's most powerful body marks a "strategic shift" in the way they're dealing with Israel.

Earlier this week, former negotiator Mohammed Shtayyeh told journalists that armed struggle and more than 20 years of on-and-off bilateral talks had failed to secure an independent Palestinian state. "Now we are going in a completely different direction, which is the internationalisation of the issue," he said.

When a resolution is submitted, the 15-member Security Council can vote on it after 24 hours. But diplomats suggest there could be days or weeks of negotiations on this text. Nine votes are needed to adopt a resolution, which would then force the United States, Israel's closest ally, to decide whether to veto it.

Israel's Foreign Minister, Avigdor Lieberman, has described the Palestinian effort as a "gimmick". He said it would not hasten a peace deal because "without Israeli consent, nothing will change".

French draft

Earlier this week, US Secretary of State John Kerry met chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat in London over the proposed timetable.

Mr Kerry said the US had made "no determinations about language, approaches, specific resolutions, any of that".

Another draft resolution, being put together by France, would call for a return to talks on a final treaty with the aim of achieving a two-state solution to the conflict within two years.

It does not mention an Israeli withdrawal, but does lay out some of the parameters of a permanent peace deal.

Direct peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians brokered by the US collapsed in April.

A previous draft of a Palestinian proposal that was circulated informally to the security council in October called for an end to Israeli occupation of Palestinian land by November 2016. However, the US and others found the text unacceptable.