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United States vetoes UN draft rejecting Trump Jerusalem move

19 December, 2017, 08:12 | Author: Priscilla Morrison
  • The writer is Assistant Professor of Politics and International Relations at the Lahore School of Economics. He can be contacted

"We disagree with the USA decision unilaterally to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel before a final status agreement and to move the USA embassy to Jerusalem", said British Ambassador to the U.N. Matthew Rycroft.

The Palestinians want East Jerusalem, now occupied by Israel, as the capital of their future independent state.

"This veto is being done in defence of American sovereignty and in defence of America's role in the Middle East peace process".

Trump announced early this month that he chose to begin the process of moving the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem as part of recognizing historical reality.

United Nations- The US Monday vetoed a draft UN resolution rejecting President Donald Trump's decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital, after all 14 other Security Council members backed the measure.

Britain's Permanent Representative Matthew Ryrcroft reflected the views of the other members when he said the USA decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel's capital decision had no legal affect and his country disagreed with it.

"What we witnessed here today in the Security Council is an insult".

Moscow's deputy United Nations envoy Vladimir Safronkov said Russian Federation is ready to hold direct talks between the two sides - effectively replacing the U.S. - and insisted that it is important to move "as quickly as possible towards direct Israeli-Palestinian negotiations".

The Palestinian people's heritage was intimately interwoven with that of the city and East Jerusalem was the capital of Palestine.

The Palestinians slammed the veto as "unacceptable" and vowed to turn to the UN General Assembly to win adoption for the resolution that was blocked at the council.

Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki said the Palestinians would seek a rare emergency special session of the 193-member U.N. General Assembly on Trump's decision.

"We also call on all political leaders to encourage everyone to refrain from violence; it is only in a peaceful situation that the chances of peace will be maximised", he said.

Diplomats said they expected the United States to use its veto power to block the measure but that most, if not all, of the 14 other members are expected to back the draft resolution. The last time the U.S. had vetoed a resolution was in 2011 when it voted against a motion condemning the building of Israeli settlements in Jerusalem and the occupied territories.

The Palestinians had sought a toughly-worded draft resolution that would have directly called on the United States administration to scrap its decision, but the final version was softened to draw maximum support.

The veto cast by US Ambassador Nikki Haley highlighted Washington's isolation over Trump's announcement that the US embassy will be moved from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, effectively ignoring Palestinian claims on the city.



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