Get the latest from our reporter outside the United Nations headquarters where demonstrators are expected to gather as Palestinians, determined to ask the United Nations to accept them as a member state, were poised to make their bid Friday.
UPDATE | 1:15 p.m.
On Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' address to the U.N.: "I heard great things from our president," said Mofid Awawdeh, 31, of Brooklyn. "I'm so happy for him and all our people." He said he didn't think the statehood bid would yield results "but at least the whole world knows that we exist. It seems like we have been forgotten."
UPDATE | 1:04 p.m.
A huge Palestinian flag is being spread over the crowd.
UPDATE | 12:53 p.m.
Applause for the Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas in the Assembly is followed by applause from the crowd outside, who join in with chants of "Free Palestine!" and "Long Live Palestine!"
UPDATE | 12:49 p.m.
One of the organizers passed by with several umbrellas, which were in high demand, outside the UN on Friday.
UPDATE | 12:46 p.m.
Bashar Shakhshir, of Woodland Park, N.J.: "The main message today is: enough is enough. Almost 10 million people are looking for a state. The whole world knows our suffering. ... "We are not expecting much, maybe getting recognition as the observer state."
UPDATE | 12:44 p.m.
Sofia Hasan, 34, of Clifton, N.J. said that the day's events at the U.N. on Friday will not ultimately affect change: "It will not make a lot of difference, but even if it is 10 or 20 people to come out," Hasan said. "It's showing we stand united with our brothers."
UPDATE | 12:16 p.m.
As Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas spoke inside the UN, outside, Aref Assaf, member of the Palestinian Committee said : "This is our right, and it is our responsibility to make it happen. Sixty-three years is long enough. We have waited enough. ... Our march for statehood cannot be stopped."
UPDATE | 12:09 p.m.
A group of women dancing, singing and waving Palestinian and American flags outside the UN.
UPDATE | 12:01 p.m.
Several dozen protesters have gathered under heavy rain, waving flags, while patriotic songs about the independent state of Palestine blare from the speakers.
UPDATE | 11:55 a.m.
Group Jews United Against Zionism, which is in favor of dismantling Israel, joins the protest.
"Zionism is transition from religion to nationalism," Rabbi Yisroel Dovid Weiss said. "Judaism forbids suppresion and killing of people, and that is what's being done in its name. It is a crime against God."
UPDATE | 11:41 a.m.
Tasneem Al-Jayyousi, 21, poly science and English major at City College, came with three friends to demonstrate outside the United Nations to send a message of unity.
"It's a message of solidarity," Al-Jayyousi said. "I know we're not gonna get them to say, 'Yes,' but we're here to show we stand by Palestine, and we will not give up. ... Everyone says America supposrts the Arab spring. Then why not everyone, why not Palestine?"
UPDATE | 11:20 a.m.
Outside the UN where Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is scheduled to speak Friday
— WNYC reporter Mirela Iverac