US blocks former Palestinian prime minister from senior UN role in Libya ‘out of support for Israel’

US blocks former Palestinian prime minister from senior UN role in Libya ‘out of support for Israel

Source: US blocks former Palestinian prime minister from senior UN role in Libya ‘out of support for Israel’

The Trump administration is under fire after it blocked the appointment of a well-respected former Palestinian prime minister to a senior UN role seemingly because he is a Palestinian.

Salam Fayyad, a Western-educated technocrat, won plaudits from Israeli leaders and from the Bush administration for his reform efforts when he served prime minister of the Palestinian Authority in the late 2000s.

The 65-year-old had been tipped to become the new UN special representative in Libya, a role that would have nothing to do with the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians.

 But his prospects at the job appear to have been dashed after Nikki Haley, the new US ambassador to the UN, objected to his appointment out of support for Israel.
Nikki Haley, the US ambassador to the UN, said she was blocking Fayyad out of support for Israel Credit: Sean Rayford/Getty Images

The United States was disappointed to see a letter indicating the intention to appoint the former Palestinian Authority prime minister to lead the UN Mission in Libya,” Mrs Haley said.

“For too long the UN has been unfairly biased in favor of the Palestinian Authority to the detriment of our allies in Israel. The United States does not currently recognise a Palestinian state or support the signal this appointment would send within the United Nations, however, we encourage the two sides to come together directly on a solution.”

Dan Shapiro, Barack Obama’s ambassador to Israel, called the decision “stunningly dumb”.

“Every US official who worked with Fayyad knows him to be serious, clean, and a pro. So what if he’s Palestinian?” Mr Shapiro added.

Martin Indyk, a former US special envoy for Israeli-Palestinian issues, called the move one “of the most anti-Israel decisions Trump could take”.

The Palestinian Liberation Organisation, the official international representative of the Palestinian people, said the decision to block Mr Fayyad was “blatant discrimination against him on the basis of his nationality”.

“We hope that saner voices will prevail and that the US will take back this irrational and discriminatory decision immediately and not deprive the UN of such a highly qualified individual.”

Israel’s mission to the UN praised the move, saying: “The new administration proved once again that it stands firmly alongside the State of Israel in the international arena and in the UN in particular.”

The decision comes ahead of a meeting between Donald Trump and Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli prime, in Washington this week.

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One Comment on “US blocks former Palestinian prime minister from senior UN role in Libya ‘out of support for Israel’”

  1. I wouldn’t give these vagabonds the right time of day, let alone sovereignty or representation.
    They’ve never been a nation nor has “Palestine” EVER EXISTED. It’s a figment of their imagination and a pretend people.
    These are refugees of their own people’s making.
    Let them go home – to Jordan, Syria, Lebanon and wherever they crawled out from.

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