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UN Votes 128-9 To Reject U.S. Recognition Of Jerusalem As Israel Capital


Palestinian Authority President Mahmud Abbas called the vote a "victory for Palestine." (file photo)

The UN General Assembly has voted 128-9 in favor of a draft resolution rejecting Washington’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

The December 21 vote during a rare emergency assembly session was seen as a strong rebuke against U.S. President Donald Trump, who had warned of potential cuts in foreign aid to nations that went along with the resolution.

Thirty-five countries abstained, including Australia, Canada, Mexico, and the Philippines.

Along with the United States and Israel, those voting against the resolution were: Guatemala, Honduras, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Palau, and Togo.

Key U.S. allies, including Britain, France, Germany, and Japan, voted for the resolution.

Russia also voted in favor of the resolution.

The nonbinding UN resolution called for the assembly to declare U.S. recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital “null and void.”

Palestinian Authority President Mahmud Abbas called the vote a "victory for Palestine."

But Israel rejected it, and thanked Trump for his "unequivocal" stance.

"Israel rejects the U.N. decision and at the same time is satisfied with the high number of countries that did not vote in its favour," said a statement from Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office.

"Israel thanks (U.S.) President Trump for his unequivocal position in favour of Jerusalem and thanks the countries that voted together with Israel, together with the truth," it said.

Ahead of the vote, Israel's envoy to the UN, Danny Danon, vowed that "no General Assembly resolution will ever drive us from Jerusalem."

Trump had said he would scrutinize the outcome and suggested that Washington could cut off financial aid to countries that supported the text.

"We're watching those votes," the president said on December 20. "Let them vote against us, we'll save a lot. We don't care."

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on December 21 called on countries not to be swayed by Trump's threat, and expressed hope that the world would "give a very good lesson" to the United States.

A similar draft resolution was vetoed by the United States at the UN Security Council on December 18, as all other 14 council members voted in favor.

Trump announced on December 6 to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital and to move the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv, triggering international condemnation and protests across the Muslim world.

Palestinians regard Jerusalem as the capital of their future state. Israel has annexed East Jerusalem and declared the city as its capital, a move never recognized by the international community.

With reporting by AP, AFP, and The Jerusalem Post

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