News Release

* Jerusalem * Can the Palestinians Launch a “Legal Intifadah”?


JOHN QUIGLEY, quigley.2 at
Professor emeritus of international law at Ohio State University, Quigley’s books include The Statehood of Palestine: International Law in the Middle East Conflict and The International Diplomacy of Israel’s Founders: Deception at the United Nations in the Quest for Palestine (both Cambridge University Press).

He said today: “Under the Jerusalem Embassy Act, the president must move the U.S. embassy in Israel from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem unless he affirms every six months that moving the embassy conflicts with the security interests of the United States. Last June Trump gave such a waiver, thus relieving himself of the obligation to move the embassy. He is expected to give a waiver again [this month]. But this time he is hinting that he will make a statement that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel. This would be a break from the view of the international community since 1947 that the status of Jerusalem is not resolved. It would further erode the U.S. position as a negotiator for Israeli-Palestinian peace, since the status of Jerusalem is one of the issues to be decided in Israeli-Palestinian negotiations.”

FRANCIS BOYLE, fboyle at
Boyle, professor of international law at the University of Illinois College of Law, served as legal adviser to the PLO. His books include the Palestinian Right of Return under International Law.

He said today: “Trump’s move is a symbolic but still critical step in Israeli designs to control not just Jerusalem, but all of historic Palestine. The Palestinian leadership needs to deal with this threat by all available legal means, including what I call a legal intifadah. The U.S. has prevented full Palestinian membership at the United Nations. The PLO could remedy this by using the Uniting for Peace mechanism, which would mean a vote on the issue in the General Assembly and not the Security Council where the U.S. government has a veto.

“No member state of the United Nations organization has ever been destroyed or eliminated. Some of them have broken off into constituent units but they have never been extinguished. Israel would like all of Palestine, the West Bank, East Jerusalem — without the Palestinians. A legal strategy dealing with this threat is needed.”

See an interview with Boyle elaborating on legal strategies. Also see by Sam Husseini “Questioning Ashrawi on Palestinian U.N. Bid: Will You Go to the General Assembly? Is this a PA Ploy?