Israeli PM: UN bid to hurt Palestinian state quest

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Palestinian schoolgirls hold pictures of President Mahmoud Abbas with Yasser Arafat, flowers and olive branches during a rally supporting the Palestinian UN bid for observer state status, in the West Bank city of Nablus, Wednesday, Nov. 28, 2012. The Palestinians will request to upgrade their status on November 29. The status could add weight to Palestinian claims for a state in the West Bank, Gaza Strip and east Jerusalem, territories captured by Israel in the 1967 Mideast war from Jordan. (AP Photo/Nasser Ishtayeh)

JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel's prime minister says the recognition of an independent state of Palestine in the U.N. General Assembly will not advance the Palestinians' quest for a homeland.

Benjamin Netanyahu says the Palestinians will not win a state until they recognize Israel as the Jewish homeland, declare an end to their conflict with the Jewish state and agree to security arrangements that protect Israel.

The Palestinians have resisted such declarations in the past. They say recognizing Israel as the Jewish homeland is liable to undermine their demand to repatriate Palestinian refugees. They also object to Netanyahu's demand for a long-term Israeli military presence in parts of the West Bank.

The General Assembly is expected later Thursday to vote on the Palestinian bid.