The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) was set to vote on Thursday on yet another anti-Israel resolution, outlawing Jewish housing in the Holy Land, when president elect Donald Trump stepped in. The resolution, initiated by Egypt, would have declared all Jewish housing in Judea, Samaria, the Golan, and East Jerusalem illegal by international law and would have demanded that Israel cease all construction in these areas. The resolution called for Israel to, “”immediately and completely cease all settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem.”
Several resolutions of this type have passed UNSC votes in the past but were vetoed by the United States. It was unclear whether the administration of President Barack Obama would have vetoed this resolution had it passed on Thursday. In a speech at the Saban Forum earlier this month, outgoing Secretary of State John Kerry hinted that America may not veto an anti-settlement resolution, calling the Jewish settlements in Israel, “an obstacle to peace”. US State Department spokesman John Kirby took it one step further when, at a press conference three days ago, he labelled the Jewish settlements as “illegal”.
Israeli UN Ambassador Danny Danon called the draft “the peak of hypocrisy”.
“It is absurd that at a time when thousands are being massacred in Syria, the Security Council is devoting time and energy to convene and discuss condemning the only true democracy in the Middle East,” Danon said in a statement.
NBC News reported that several diplomatic sources had informed them the outgoing Obama administration had intended to abstain from Thursdays vote.
President elect Donald Trump contacted the White House on Wednesday, saying that he supported an America veto of the resolution. Trump made a public announcement on Thursday.
Egypt withdrew the resolution before the vote was scheduled to take place Thursday morning.