United Nations, May 5: Israel has withdrawn from the election for a two-year term on the Security Council that pitted it against Germany and Belgium. Israel’s UN Mission announced the decision shortly before a debate between the three candidates was due to start at the UN on Friday afternoon. “After consulting with our partners, including our good friends, the State of Israel has decided to postpone its candidacy for a seat on the Security Council,” the mission said.
The non-permanent seats in the Council are distributed regionally and Israel, which is in the Western European and Other Group (WEOG), had planned to contest one of the group’s two seats for the 2019-2020 term. The failure to run unopposed for the WEOG seat is a diplomatic setback for Israel, which has never had a seat the Council, and, according to the US ambassador to Germany, Richard Grenell, a broken promise by West European countries. (IANS)