Palestine invites leaders to flag raising ceremony at UN
16 Septembar 2015, Nirapad News: The Palestine government invited hundreds of world leaders to celebrate the raising of its flag for the first time at the United Nations headquarters in New York on September 30.
‘It will be a glorious day, a proud day for us. We expect hundreds of leaders to be with Palestine President Mahmoud Abbas to celebrate that moment,’ PLO ambassador to the UN Riyad Mansour told reporters in New York on Tuesday, The Jerusalem Post publishes this report on Wednesday.
On that same day, Mansour said, millions of Palestinians everywhere will fly the flag as an informal referendum in support of an independent Palestine and against Israel’s continued ‘occupation’ of the West Bank.
‘There will be hundreds of thousands, maybe millions of Palestinian flags raised in every house, every school, every institution,’ Mansour said and added that they would be even flown atop cars.
He spoke just days after the UN General Assembly voted 119 to 8, with 45 abstentions to allow its two non-member states — Palestine and the Holy See — to fly their flags in front of UN buildings along with those of member states.
The Palestinian flag will be raised for the first time just after Abbas addresses the UN, as he does annually, during the opening of its 70th General Assembly.
Raising the Palestinian flag at the UN is a symbolic gesture, because the UN has not accepted Palestine as a member state.
But Mansour said that it was still a significant step because it provided Palestinians with a ‘beacon of hope’ in an otherwise bleak Middle Eastern landscape.
‘It will be a proud day for the Palestinian people, when we see our flag, joining the flags of the rest of the nations. That would be a significant step in the direction of our natural and legal right to become a full member at the UN,’ said Mansour.
His office, he said, was working with the UN secretariat to find a location for the ceremony and to finalize its details.
The flag polls for both the Palestinian flag and that of the Holy See have already been erected, he said.
Israel and the US were among eight countries who voted against the UN General Assembly decision to allow the Palestinian flag to fly at the UN. The other opposing votes were: Australia, Canada, the Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Palau and Tuvalu. They also oppose holding a flag raising ceremony.
Ten of the 28 European Union countries voted in favor of flying the Palestinian flag, including Belgium, France, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Malta, Poland, Slovenia, Spain and Sweden. The rest abstained.