RAMALLAH (Reuters/AFP) - The US is showing "disdain" for Arabs by trying to prevent the Palestinians from gaining statehood recognition at the UN, a senior Palestinian official said on Wednesday. Washington fears the Palestinians' move at the United Nations, expected later this month, could further snarl flagging US efforts to revive Middle East peace talks, which broke down last year following a row over Jewish settlements. Meanwhile, China said it supported an independent state of Palestine and would back the Palestinians' controversial bid for membership of the United Nations. "An independent state is an inalienable, lawful right of the Palestinian people as well as the foundation and pre-condition of realising peaceful coexistence between Palestine and Israel," foreign ministry spokeswoman Jiang Yu told reporters. "We understand, respect and support Palestine's plan to submit the issue to the UN." David Hale, the US Middle East peace envoy, met with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Wednesday in the latest American effort to halt the UN maneuverings but he apparently did not manage to bring a restart of direct talks with Israel any closer. "(The president) repeated his stance that the Palestinian and Arab position is to go to the United Nations, given that the Israeli side still refuses to acknowledge clear terms of reference and is building settlements," senior Abbas aide Nabil Abu Rdainah told Reuters after the meeting. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu repeated his call on Wednesday for Abbas to return to direct peace talks and stay the course. Meanwhile, a top White House diplomatic nominee told lawmakers Wednesday that the US would veto a UN resolution creating a Palestinian state if such a measure reaches the Security Council. "The administration has been very clear as well - and I don't expect this to occur, but that if it did occur, if any such resolution were put in front of the Security Council - that we would veto it," said Wendy Sherman.