Abbas urges UN to issue 'birth certificate' for Palestine
UNITED NATIONS (REUTERS) - Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Thursday urged the United Nations (UN) General Assembly to grant de facto recognition to a sovereign state of Palestine by upgrading the UN observer status of the Palestinian Authority from "entity" to "non-member state."
"Sixty-five years ago on this day, the UN General Assembly adopted resolution 181, which partitioned the land of historic Palestine into two states and became the birth certificate for Israel," Mr Abbas told the 193-nation assembly after receiving a standing ovation.
"The General Assembly is called upon today to issue a birth certificate of the reality of the State of Palestine," he said.
The assembly is expected to approve a resolution shortly that implicitly recognises Palestinian statehood, despite threats by the United States (US) and Israel to punish the Palestinians by withholding funds for the West Bank government.