1. MIDDLE EAST

    New Plan to Delay Palestine U.N. Vote

    Palestinians march during a rally to support the Palestinian statehood bid in the United Nations, in the West Bank city of Ramallah, Tuesday, Sept. 20, 2011. The Palestinians brushed aside heated Israeli objections and a promised U.S. veto Monday, vowing to submit a letter formally requesting full U.N. membership when Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas addresses the General Assembly. Number 194 represents the Palestinian hope to become 194th member of the UN. (AP Photo/Majdi Mohammed)

    Majdi Mohammed / AP Photo

    Tens of thousands of people rallied Wednesday in the West Bank to support Palestine’s U.N. bid for statehood. The U.N. vote, however, may not take place, as international leaders are unifying around a plan that would have the Palestinian leader, Mahmoud Abbas, submit a request for recognition but then delay the actual vote in exchange for new peace talks with Israel. The Middle East “Quartet” of the United Nations, European Union, United States,  and Russia is pushing the plan, which would avoid confrontation and spare the U.S. from having to veto the Palestinian bid. Israel’s position, however, is unclear, including whether or not it would cease settlement construction in the West Bank. "The Palestinians are open to a way out of this," one diplomat tells The Guardian. "But they can't abandon the Security Council vote without something to show.”

    Read it at The Guardian