Netanyahu to US: “Veto UN resolution on settlements”..vote postphoned and then the US abstains
Netanyahu urged the United States to veto a UN Security Council resolution condemning Israeli settlement activities in a vote scheduled for Thursday.
Netanyahu said in a message on Twitter that the United States “should veto the anti-Israel resolution.”
The Security Council is due to vote on the draft of the resolution that would demand that Israel “immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory, including east Jerusalem.” Egypt circulated the draft on Wednesday evening, diplomats said. It was unclear how the United States, which has traditionally protected Israel from UN action, would vote. A White House official declined comment.
In a statement early on Thursday morning, Israeli Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon criticized the resolution, especially in light of conflicts in the region. “It is bizarre that while thousands are being slaughtered in Syria,” he wrote, “the Security Council dedicates time specifically to discuss the condemnation of the sole democracy in the Middle East [Israel].”
“We expect our greatest ally to not let this one-sided and anti-Israel resolution pass through,” he added.
The resolution, a draft of which was seen by The Jerusalem Post on December 11,was said to be similar to an anti-settlement resolution that outgoing President Barack Obama vetoed in 2011. It reaffirmed that “all Israeli settlement activities in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including east Jerusalem, are illegal under international law and constitute a major obstacle to the achievement of peace on the basis of the two-state solution.”
The draft says that continuing settlement activities “are dangerously imperiling the viability of the two-state solution based on the 1967 borders [sic],” and says that the cessation of all settlement activity “is essential for salvaging” the two-state solution.
The Palestinian draft is not the only one circulating among delegations at the UN. New Zealand – which is set to finish its two-year rotating stint on the Security Council at the end of the month – is circulating a draft resolution of its own.
This draft, also seen by the Post, declared that the two-state solution is the “only way to achieve an enduring peace that meets Israeli security needs and Palestinian aspirations for statehood and sovereignty, ends the occupation that began in 1967 and resolves all permanent status issues.”
President-elect Donald Trump is opposed to the resolution before the UN Security Council condemning Israeli settlements, and wants the US to veto it.
The resolution proposed by Egypt says the “establishment by Israel of settlements in the Palestinian territory occupied since 1967, including East Jerusalem, has no legal validity and constitutes a flagrant violation under international law and a major obstacle to the achievement of the two-State solution and a just, lasting and comprehensive peace,” according to a draft put forward on Wednesday.
It also demands of Israel to “immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem.”
The United Nations Security Council has postponed a vote on a draft resolution demanding that Israel halt its illegal settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territories.
The 15-member body was scheduled to vote on the resolution, circulated by Egypt, on Thursday.
According to diplomats, the vote on the draft resolution has been delayed to allow time for consultations on the measure but no new time or date has been scheduled.
The draft resolution demands that “Israel immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory,” including East Jerusalem al-Quds as the establishment of settlements is a “flagrant violation” of international law and has “no legal validity.”
There are conflicting reports about reasons behind the postponement of the vote.
Sources close to the matter told Reuters on Thursday that Israel had asked Egypt to delay the vote. Meanwhile, a Western diplomat told Reuters that Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah el-Sisi had instructed Egypt’s UN mission to postpone the vote.
Israeli Premier Benjamin Netanyahu had earlier urged the United States to use its veto power at the council to block the resolution.
Defying extraordinary pressure from President-elect Donald J. Trump and furious lobbying by Israel, the Obama administration on Friday (Saturday AEDT) allowed the United Nations Security Council to adopt a resolution that condemned Israeli settlement construction.
The administration’s decision not to veto the measure broke a longstanding American policy of serving as Israel’s sturdiest diplomatic shield at the United Nations.
While the measure will have no practical impact on the ground, it was regarded as a major rebuff to Israel that could increase its isolation over the paralysed peace process with the Palestinians, who have sought to establish their own state on territory held by Israel.
Applause broke out in the 15-member Security Council’s chambers following the vote on the measure, which passed 14-0, with the United States abstaining.
The resolution declared Israeli settlements illegal under international law and demanded that the country cease construction in the West Bank and other territories captured in the 1967 Middle East war. Samantha Power, the US ambassador to the United Nations, defended the move to abstain, saying “one cannot champion” settlements and a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict at the same time.
this saga had a many twists and corrections..eventually the usa abstained which is pretty much a slap in the face with a wet lettuce..but better than a veto..i guess..
your move israel..the world just closed in on you a little bit..