The United States might take actions against countries who voted against its decision of recognizing the disputed Jerusalem as the capital city of Israel. This voting took place at the United Nations General Assembly after the U.S blocked a similar resolution in the UN Security Council.
The U.S representative in the United Nations, Nikki Haley has stated that President Donald Trump asked her to report those countries who criticized the decision of the U.S regarding Jerusalem. Though the draft resolution in the UN General Assembly doesn’t mention the name of the United States, it says that judgments on Jerusalem should be canceled.
“The president will be watching this vote carefully and has requested I report back on those countries who voted against us. We will take note of each and every vote on this issue,” Haley Stated. “The president’s announcement does not affect final status negotiations in any way, including the specific boundaries of Israeli sovereignty in Jerusalem,” she added. “The president also made sure to support the status quo of Jerusalem’s holy sites.”
The debated sovereignty over the city of Jerusalem
The long-existing conflict between Israel and Palestine includes the sovereignty of the city of Jerusalem, which is claimed by both states as their official capital. To avoid conflicts, there is no international recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, though it occupied the east part of the city – which was first held by Jordan – after the 1967 Middle East war. States has opted for establishing their embassies in Tel Aviv instead, as Palestinians sai that East Jerusalem is the capital of their future state too.
However, about two weeks ago, Donald Trump’s administration decided to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and said it would open its embassy there. This action triggered protests and chaos in the region, as well as it brought disapproval among other nations who don’t consider that the United States made an intelligent decision to conclude the peace process between Arabs and Israelis.
This is more concerning, giving the fact that the United States has been one of the brokers in the negotiation. Many criticized the announcement stating that how could a useful actor in the peace process undoubtedly favor one of the parties involved, regarding such a delicate matter as it is the sovereignty of the sacred city of Jerusalem.
Haley: ‘an insult,’ ‘it won’t be forgotten’
This matter has been discussed in the United Nations, responsible for creating the states of Palestine and Israel seven decades ago. However, the United States is upset by the fact that more and more countries are rejecting its decision.
On Monday, the US avoided the discussion of the status of Jerusalem in the Security Council, where it holds the so-called vetoed power. The Security Council resolution stated that any decisions on the status of Jerusalem were “null and void and must be rescinded,” and pleaded all states to “refrain from the establishment of diplomatic missions in the holy city.”
The other 14 members of the Security Council voted in favor of the resolution, but the U.S vetoed it and said this voting was an insult to the United States and that it won’t be forgotten.
Since it was impossible to take this matter to that organ, it was taken to the General Assembly, where all of the 193-countries have the same weight on the decisions – 1 vote – and where no veto power can avoid a topic from being discussed.
The voting will take place on Thursday during an emergency special session of the General Assembly, which was requested by the Arab and Muslim states, after the surprising and worrying change of policy made by the United States. The non-binding resolution that will be discussed and voted was introduced by Yemen and Turkey.
However, Nikki Haley, the US representative to the United Nations, warned the countries she “will be taking names” of those who criticize their decision regarding Jerusalem. She said Trump would take this voting personally.
“At the UN we’re always asked to do more & give more. So, when we make a decision, at the will of the American ppl, abt where to locate OUR embassy, we don’t expect those we’ve helped to target us. On Thurs there’ll be a vote criticizing our choice. The US will be taking names.” Tweeted Nikki Haley on her personal account.
On the other hand, Palestine representative to the United Nations – Riyad Mansour – said they expect an overwhelming support for the resolution. Palestine is not a member state of the UN, it is just an observer state, and just like the Holy See, it doesn’t have the right to vote.