(JNS) The United Nations General Assembly on Thursday overwhelmingly approved a resolution denouncing President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.
Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations Danny Danon speaks on Thursday during what the U.N. General Assembly described as its “Tenth Emergency Special Session on the illegal Israeli actions in Occupied East Jerusalem and the rest of the Occupied Palestinian Territory.” Credit: U.N. Photo/Manuel Elias.
The 193-member General Assembly voted 128-9, with 35 abstentions, to express “deep regret” over Trump’s Jerusalem policy changes, which also include plans to move the U.S. embassy to that city.
The nine countries voting against the resolution were the U.S., Israel, Togo, Micronesia, Guatemala, Nauru, Palau, Marshall Islands and Honduras. The 35 abstentions included a number of countries whom Israel has been courting for support during the past year, including Colombia, Mexico, Argentina, Malawi and Rwanda. Additionally, Hungary, Croatia, Latvia, Romania and the Czech Republic broke with the European Union consensus on the resolution by abstaining.
Both Trump and U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley have suggested that America might cut foreign aid to countries who supported the resolution, with Haley stating the U.S. would be “taking names” of such nations. On Thursday, Haley closed her remarks by saying the vote “will be remembered.”
In defiance of Trump, the General Assembly measure asserted that “any decisions and actions which purport to have altered the character, status or demographic composition of the Holy City of Jerusalem have no legal effect, are null and void and must be rescinded in compliance with relevant resolutions of the Security Council.”
Ahead of the vote, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called the U.N. a “house of lies” and said Israel “rejects this vote outright.”
“Jerusalem is our capital, we will continue to build there and additional embassies will move to Jerusalem,” Netanyahu said.
The discussion over the General Assembly resolution began at the behest of Turkey and Yemen after an Egyptian-sponsored measure at the U.N. Security Council was vetoed by the U.S. earlier this week.
Israeli Ambassador to the U.N. Danny Danon denounced supporters of the resolution as “puppets being pulled by the strings of the Palestinian puppet masters.”
“This resolution is nothing more than a distraction,” Danon said. “I have no doubt that today’s resolution will end up in the trash bin of history.”