UNITED TIONS, Dec 22: India joined the UN majority in voting for a General Assembly resolution criticising US President Dold Trump’s decision to unilaterally declare Jerusalem the capital of Israel and move Washington’s embassy there.
The resolution that was passed by a two-thirds majority on Thursday demanded Washington comply with Security Council decisions against changing the status of Jerusalem and declared US and Israeli action on the city “null and void”.
It, however, only expressed “deep regret at recent decisions concerning the status of Jerusalem”, stopping short of ming the US or condemning it outright. Defying Trump’s threats to cut off aid to countries that voted for the resolution, 128 countries voted for the resolution, while nine countries joined the US and Israel in voting against it.
An unusually large number — 35 countries — abstained, and 21 others were absent, showing that Trump’s threats had some effect. US Permanent Representative Nikki Haley repeated Trump’s warning on aid before the vote describing support for it an “insult” to her country.
“We will remember it when we are called upon to once again make the world’s largest contribution to the UN,” she said. “And we will remember it when so many countries come calling on us, as they so often do, to pay even more and to use our influence for their benefit.”
Palestinian Foreign Minister Riad al-Malki said that by voting for the resolution tions would be rejecting attempts at blackmail and intimidation.
He warned that Washington’s action could lead to a religious war that “has no boundaries” and only served the interests of extremists.
The Assembly resolution followed the US veto on Monday of a similar resolution in the Security Council introduced by Egypt. All the other 14 Council members voted for it, isolating the US.
The Assembly resolution was sponsored by Yemen on behalf of the Arab Group in the UN, and by Turkey on behalf of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC). (IANS)