UNITED NATIONS, Sept. 26 (Xinhua) -- The UN Security Council is scheduled to begin consultations on Monday afternoon over Palestine`s application for full UN membership.
It is the first time for the UN body to discuss the Palestinian statehood bid since the request was formally presented to the world body on Friday. But diplomats here said the consultations would take weeks, even months.
The 15-nation council is set to meet behind closed doors at 3 p.m. EDT (1900 GMT) on Monday to consider the application letter, transmitted to the Security Council by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.
Despite mounting pressure, including repeated U.S. veto threats, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Friday formally presented application to Ban.
The Israeli-Palestinian conflict, seen as a big test for international peace efforts, overwhelmed other matters at the UN Headquarters in New York as 193 member states gathered for the annual high-level debate of the UN General Assembly.
The United States threatened to veto any Security Council move to recognize the Palestinian statehood on the ground that the issue should be addressed through direct talks between the Palestinians and Israelis.
Direct talks between the two sides stalled in October 2010, when Israel declined to renew a moratorium on its settlement building.
The Middle East Quartet, consisting of the the EU, Russia, the United Nations and the United States, had set a deadline for negotiating a final settlement between Israel and Palestine for September 2011. So far there has been no indication that direct negotiations will resume.