P.A. Denies Official Launch of Bid for Statehood

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JERUSALEM, Israel -- The Palestinian Liberation Organization denied reports Thursday that they officially launched their bid to join the United Nations as a full-member state.

According to PLO officials, they are the only body authorized to present a request for state recognition, the Israeli daily Ha'aretz reported.

About 100 grassroots activists gathered outside the U.N. office in Ramallah to deliver a letter addressed to U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

The letter reportedly urged the secretary-general to "exert all possible efforts toward the achievement of the Palestinian people's just demands."

The activists are calling their initiative National Campaign Palestine: State No. 194.

In the letter, the activists said they're planning a series of what they called "peaceful events" leading up to the Sept. 20 bid at the General Assembly.

They chose an elderly woman to deliver the letter because they said she represents what they called the plight of the Palestinian Arab people.

The woman reportedly lost a son while fighting with Israel and seven other sons are serving time for terror-related activities.

The letter stated they are turning to the U.N. because they have not achieved their goals after years of negotiations with Israel.

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