[Middle-East] Palestine becomes UN Non-Member Observer, Hamas-Fatah Join hands in Unity Deal

Diplomacy68 Comments

  1. D1: Palestine wants to join UN bodies
  2. D2: Israel-Palestine: HAMAS-FATAH Unity Deal

D1: Palestine wants to join UN bodies

Background

  • for the full historic coverage of Israel-Palestine, read my earlier article click me
  • 2012: Palestine given UN Non-Member observer status, and thus become eligible to sign 63 international treaties.
  • Now, Palestine wants Israel to release final group of Palestinian prisoners.
  • But Israel not complying, and USA also failed to convince Israel.
  • Therefore, to mount pressure on Israel, the Palestine President Abbas wants to join 15 UN agencies and international treaties such as Vienna Convention on diplomatic relations, child rights, anti-torture, anti-corruption convention and so on.
  • How will it help? Under Geneva conventions, Palestine can file complaints against Israel, for its human rights violations and illegal settlements activities.

Map israel gaza palestine
Interview Q1: What will the impact on India?

  • India has been historically backing rights of people of Palestine, PLO (Palestine Liberation Organisation) is also member of NAM.
  • However, in the recent years, India is proactively engaged with Israel- for cooperation in defence and agriculture. They’re our 3th largest military supplier, including radars and AEW&C (airborne early warning and control systems). Therefore, we have lower down the voice against Israel.
  • But If Palestine will become member of UN agencies than it will be difficult for India to walk on the tight rope and which side to lean towards.
  • Obviously, India should stand for human rights and just treatment for the Palestinians, but a firm stand on any side should be according to need of the time.

Interview Q2: What’ll be impact on USA / Israel?

  • Not any immediate effect.
  • But If Palestine will be successful in filing case against Israel in ICC or ICJ under any of those conventions, then it’ll be difficult for USA to protect Israel.
  • Therefore, US Secretary of State John Kerry has asked Palestinian President Mohd. Abbas to withdraw his applications to join those treaty conventions. (Also Abbas rejected Kerry’s request.)
  • As of now, other UNSC permanent members have not come forward for the support of either Israel or Palestine
  • But if Russia or China would come forward to back Palestine than the situation might take a turn for the worse, in the already tense gulf region.
  • And Russia will probably do so, just to distract world-attention from Ukraine, and put USA on defensive about Israel.
  • In that situation, USA will have to flex its muscle to manoeuvre the international community to not to act against Israel.

D2: Israel-Palestine: HAMAS-FATAH Unity Deal (Apr 14)

Israel Palestine Hamas Unity deal
Interview Q. Why have Fatah and Hamas signed Unity deal? What’ll be its implication on Israel-Palestine relations?

  • Hamas and Fatah =two rival factions of PLO (Palestine Liberation Organization).
  • 2006: Hamas wins Palestine election but failed to form government
  • 2007: rift between Hamas and Fatah => civil war.
  • Both factions tried to reconcile in 2011 and 12 but no help.
HamasFatah
not importantIts leader Mahmood Abbas is the current President of Palestine authority.
Dominates Gaza & Coastal areas. Mostly poor & isolated regions.Dominates West Bank area. Most populous and rich.
  • Refuses to recognize Israel as a sovereign country.
  • Uses violent methods to “teach” Israelis a lesson.
Moderate views than Hamas.
  • Undergoing crisis period due to lack of money and political support.
  • Egyptian army wiped out their supporters (Muslim brotherhood) and supply tunnels to Gaza.
Egyptian army supports them.
Even Qatar has stopped supporting Hamas.

Fast forward to current issue

  • July 2013: Peace talks begin between Israel & Palestine, USA plays mediator.
  • These talks had deadline of nine months (=end in April 2014.)
  • But peace talks failed because:
PARTYAction
PALESTINE
  • Israel has not released our prisoners. We’ll now apply to join 15 UN agencies and international treaties such as Vienna Convention on diplomatic relations, child rights, anti-torture, anti-corruption convention and so on.
  • Then we’ll complain about Israel in those bodies.
  • Switzerland has even supported that Palestine can join Geneva Convention!
ISRAEL
  • Palestine is trying to bully me under those stupid conventions
  • Now for “tit for tat”. Every month we collect taxes from Palestine’s junta and pay $100 million to Palestine authority. But since you’ve applied to those UN bodies & secretly negotiating with terror outfits like Hamas, now we’ll withhold that tax money 😛
USAfirst time publically blamed Israel for failure of talks –  Because Israel’s decision to build 700 more settlements in Palestinian territory

Anyways, just one day before the talk deadline in April 2014, Hamas and Fatah propose to sign a peace agreement, with following features:

  • We recognize Israel as a country  (but of 1967 borders)
  • We Renounce violence
  • We Acceptance of previous Israel- Palestine agreement 2011 and Hamas-Fatah agreement 2012
  • We’ll hold election within 6 months.

Why USA-Israel unhappy with this “Unity Deal” between Hamas & Fatah?

  1. USA and Israel have declared Hamas as a militant/ terrorist organization. Hence direct negotiation with Hamas is against their official policy.
  2. USA declared that the pact is unhelpful and paused the talks.
  3. Some expert believe this is a tactic by Palestine leader Mahmood Abbas. He has not formally signed this treaty yet. This is a ploy to force Israel to release those $100 tax money.
  4. Israel’s stand: if Abbas signs this Unity Pact with Hamas=> we’ll hold him reasonable for every rocket fired towards Israeli settlements.
  5. EU Stand: Hamas is still a terror outfit under EU laws. We’ll recognize any deal between Israel-Palestine ONLY if Palestine is ruled by a “non-violent” regime.

Visit Mrunal.org/Diplomacy for entire list articles on Diplomacy & International relations (IR) for Mains GS2 paper of UPSC Civil service IAS/IPS Exam.

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So far 68 Comments posted

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