Right Web

Tracking militarists’ efforts to influence U.S. foreign policy

Historic UN Security Council Vote Condemns Israeli Settlements

Inter Press Service

A historic UN Security Council resolution demanding an end to Israeli settlements received sustained applause within the security council chamber after it was adopted with 14 votes in favour and one abstention on Friday.

The Arab-backed resolution condemns the “construction and expansion” of Israeli settlements in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, calling them a “flagrant violation” of international law and a “major obstacle to the achievement of the two-State solution.”

Rivad Mansour. Permanent Observer of the State of Palestine to the UN welcomed the vote describing it as long-overdue, necessary and important.

“The resolution adopted reaffirms the Council’s decades-long position that Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem have no legal validity, constitute flagrant breaches under international law, namely the Fourth Geneva Convention, and constitute a major obstacle to peace,” said Mansour.

The United States abstained from the vote, choosing not to use its veto in a break with the country’s long-standing foreign policy towards Israel.

In her address following the vote, U.S. Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power agreed that Israeli settlements have “no legal validity,” however, she noted that their vote was not a straightforward one due to double standards Israel has faced at the UN.

“For as long as Israel has been a member of this institution, Israel has been treated differently from other nations at the United Nations,” she told the Council, noting that this unequal treatment hurts Israel and undermines the legitimacy of the UN and is among the reasons that the U.S. did not vote in favour of the resolution.

But because the resolution “reflects the facts on the ground,” the U.S. did not veto the document, Power said.

“It is precisely our commitment to Israel’s security that makes the U.S. believe that we cannot stand in the way of this resolution as we seek to preserve a change of attaining our longstanding objective: two states living side by side in peace and security,” she continued.

Though she reaffirmed the U.S.’ continued commitment to the security of Israel, Power noted that one cannot simultaneously champion Israeli settlement expansion and a viable two-state solution.

Since the inception of the UN, the U.S. has consistently vetoed resolutions on Israel and Palestine. According to Security Council Report, the U.S. has vetoed 30 resolutions on issues pertaining to the region, including a 2011 resolution which similarly criticised settlements.

The Obama administration has been critical of settlement construction in the West Bank and East Jerusalem. In October, the State Department “strongly condemned” the Israeli government’s decision to create a new Jewish settlement in the West Bank.

Egypt, the original sponsor of the resolution, noted that document reflects a “a painful reality of illegitimate settlement.”

“Egypt has been and continues to be one of the strongest believers in the possibility of just durable peace in the Middle East based on the principles of two-state solution and land for peace as recognised by international legitimacy,” said the Egyptian Ambassador to the UN Amr Abdellatif Aboulatta.

The resolution was initially on the Security Council’s agenda on Thursday until Egypt withdrew the resolution hours before the scheduled vote. This prompted another group of nations to reintroduce the resolution for an immediate vote on Friday afternoon.

Both Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and U.S. President-elect Trump urged the U.S. to veto the resolution on Thursday.

“As the United States has long maintained, peace between Israelis and the Palestinians will only come through direct negotiations between the parties, and not through the imposition of terms by the United Nations,” said Trump.

Almost 600,000 Israelis live in the West Bank and East Jerusalem, areas that Palestinians want as part of their future state along with the Gaza Strip. Israel captured those territories in the 1967 war and considers Jerusalem as its capital.

 

Share RightWeb

Featured Profiles

The American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), one of the more effective U.S. lobbying outfits, aims to ensure that the United States backs Israel regardless of the policies Israel pursues.


Donald Trump’s second attorney general, William Barr is the focus of a growing controversy over the Robert Mueller report because his decision to unilaterally declare that the the president had not obstructed justice during the Mueller investigation.


Gina Haspel is the first woman to hold the position of director of the CIA, winning her confirmation despite her history of involvement in torture during the Iraq War.


United against Nuclear Iran is a pressure group that attacks companies doing business in Iran and disseminates alarmist reports about the country’s nuclear program.


Jared Kushner, Donald Trump’s son-in-law, is the president’s senior adviser, whose dealings with the Persian Gulf leaders have come under scrutiny for conflicts of interest.


Erik Prince, former CEO of the mercenary group Blackwater, continues to sell security services around the world as controversies over his work—including in China and the Middle East, and his alleged involvement in collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia—grow.


Robert Joseph played a key role in manipulating U.S. intelligence to support the invasion of Iraq and today is a lobbyist for the MEK.


For media inquiries,
email rightwebproject@gmail.com

From the Wires

President Trump’s announcement that he would recognise Israeli sovereignty over the western part of the Golan Heights destroys the negotiating basis for any future peace between Israel and Syria. It also lays the groundwork for a return to a world without territorial integrity for smaller, weaker countries.


The Senate on Wednesday passed a measure mandating the withdrawal of U.S. forces from the Saudi/UAE-led war against Houthi rebels in Yemen. The vote marks the first time since the War Powers Act of 1973 became law that both chambers of Congress have directed the president to withdraw American forces from a conflict.


The Trump administration’s failed “maximum pressure” approach to Iran and North Korea begs the question what the US president’s true objectives are and what options he is left with should the policy ultimately fail.


In the United States, it’s possible to debate any and every policy, domestic and foreign, except for unquestioning support for Israel. That, apparently, is Ilhan Omar’s chief sin.


While Michael Cohen mesmerized the House of Representatives and President Trump resumed his love affair with North Korea’s Kim Jong, one of the most dangerous state-to-state confrontations, centering in Kashmir, began to spiral out of control.


The Trump administration’s irresponsible withdrawal from the landmark Iran nuclear agreement undermined Iran’s Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif and emboldened hardliners who accused him of having been deceived by Washington while negotiating the agreement. However, the Iranian government could use the shock of Zarif’s resignation to push back against hardliners and take charge of both the domestic and foreign affairs of the country while Iran’s foreign opponents should consider the risks of destabilizing the government under the current critical situation.


Europe can play an important role in rebuilding confidence in the non-proliferation regime in the wake of the demise of the INF treaty, including by making it clear to the Trump administration that it wants the United States to refrain from deploying INF-banned missiles in Europe and to consider a NATO-Russian joint declaration on non-first deployment.


RightWeb
share