UNITED NATIONS

Palestinian-Arab draft resolution has set November 2016 as the deadline for Israel to end its occupation of Palestinian lands captured since 1967, including east East Jerusalem.

The circulation of the draft to Security Council members follows Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’ announcement to the U.N. General Assembly last Friday that he would ask the 15-member body  to set a deadline for a pullout and dictate the ground rules for any talks with Israel.

Israeli withdrawal must begin “as rapidly as possible and to be fully completed within a specified timeframe, not to exceed November 2016, and the achievement of the independence and sovereignty of the State of Palestine and the right to self-determination of the Palestinian people,” the text of the document states.

The draft resolution would affirm the Security Council’s determination to contribute to attaining a peaceful solution that ends the Israeli occupation “without delay” and fulfill the vision of two states — “an independent, sovereign, democratic, contiguous and viable state of Palestine” living side by side with Israel in peace and security in borders based on those before the 1967 Mideast war.

The draft calls for intensified efforts, including through negotiations, to reach a peaceful settlement of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and “a just resolution” of the status of Jerusalem as the capital of two states and of the Palestinian refugee problem.

The Palestinians already have the status of an observer state at the United Nations. But they are likely to face an uphill struggle in the Security Council  where the United States, Israel’s closest ally, has veto power and has used it to block many Palestinian-related resolutions.

Arab officials said they discussed the draft resolution on Tuesday and that it could incorporate minor amendments before possibly putting it to a vote. some diplomats also said that the draft may not be put to vote the Arab group senses that it will likely be killed by a veto power, as in previous cases.

The Arab group at the U.N. previously drafted two resolutions – one about the war in Gaza and another on the Israeli sentiments –but they were never put to a vote after it was clear that the United States was likely to veto them.

The current draft resolution also calls “upon all parties to abide by their obligations under international humanitarian law, including the Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War of 12 August 1949.”