US To Vote 'No' Instead Of Abstain On UN Resolution About Golan

17 Novembre, 2018, 00:58 | Auteur: Anatole Charbonneau
  • Israeli Merkava Mark IV tanks take positions near the Syrian border in the Golan Heights

For the first time ever, the United States on Friday meant to vote against an annual UN resolution condemning Israel's annexation of the Golan Heights.

Despite the unprecedented move by the USA, the resolution passed with 151 in favor, two against (Israel and the US) and 14 abstentions, one of nine anti-Israel resolutions passed by the world body in one day.

The resolution passed 151-2 (with 14 abstentions) and came as part of a broader package of anti-Israel resolutions that passed a marathon General Assembly committee hearing on Friday morning. However, "given the resolution's anti-Israel bias, as well as the militarization of the Syrian Golan border, and a worsening humanitarian crisis, this year the United States has chose to vote no", she wrote. "Obviously we understand the Israeli claim that it has annexed the Golan Heights - we understand their position - but there's no change in the U.S. position for now".

Israel captured around 1,200 sq km (460 sq miles) of the strategic plateau from Syria in the 1967 Middle East war, and later annexed it to internationally condemnation.

The document specifically touches upon the "illegality of the decision" by Israel "to impose its laws, jurisdiction and administration on the occupied Syrian Golan", which the resolution insists violates worldwide law.

"The resolution is plainly biased against Israel", outgoing US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley said in a statement.

Israeli officials praised the USA move. "Further, the atrocities the Syrian regime continues to commit prove its lack of fitness to govern anyone".

The presence of Iranian military forces in Syria, seen as legitimate by Russian Federation after Damascus "invited" them in, is viewed as a dire military threat by Israel that could embolden the Syrian government and Lebanese militants Hezbollah. ISIS and other terrorist groups remain in Syria. "And this resolution does nothing to bring any parties closer to a peace agreement", Haley added.

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"The change in the American voting pattern is another testament to the strong cooperation between the two countries", Danon said.

"I thank Ambassador Haley for her continued steadfastness with Israel and the truth".

The US will no longer abstain when the United Nations engages in its useless annual vote on the Golan Heights.

"It is time for the world to distinguish between those who stabilize the region and those who sow terror", he added.

The non-binding resolution is voted on every year by the UN General Assembly's Third Committee.

Former President Barack Obama resisted Netanyahu's calls for U.S. endorsement of Israeli sovereignty over the Golan, but Washington now appears more amenable to the claim.

"I've heard the idea being suggested but there's no discussion of it, no decision within the USA government", Bolton reportedly said during his visit to Israel this week. The country has long coveted the territory and argues the instability caused by Syria's civil war has bolstered its legitimacy there as a security buffer.

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