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Foreign Ministry: UN Should Condemn Syria, Not Israel

Israel criticizes European members of the UN Security Council over their condemnation of Israel. "They should have concentrated on Syria."
By Elad Benari
First Publish: 12/22/2011, 12:15 AM

Foreign Minister Lieberman (file)
Foreign Minister Lieberman (file)
Flash 90

Israel sharply criticized European members of the UN Security Council on Wednesday. The criticism came following a condemnation of Israel by UN Security Council members on Tuesday over the planned Jewish construction in Judea and Samaria as well as for ‘price tag’ vandalism. The condemnation was led by Britain, France, Germany and Portugal.

“[The European members] should have concentrated on peacemaking in centers of bloodshed such as Syria, on helping democracy and moderation take root in Arab countries aspiring to freedom, and on defusing the global danger embodied in the Iranian nuclear race,” Israel’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement quoted by AFP.

“If, instead... they invest their efforts in inappropriate bickering with the one country where the independent law and justice system can handle lawbreakers of all kinds, they are bound to lose their credibility and make themselves irrelevant,” the statement added.

The four European countries said in a joint statement after Tuesday’s Security Council meeting on the Middle East conflict that they were “dismayed by these wholly negative developments” and the threat they pose to the peace process.

The four council members also called for strong measures by the Israeli government “to halt attacks on mosques and Palestinians by extremist settlers.”

They said Israel’s recent announcements of accelerated construction in Judea and Samaria send a “devastating” message, and urged the Jewish state to reverse the plans.

The United States, meanwhile, has been facing criticism after it refused to join in the condemnation.

In response to the growing criticism, State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said on Wednesday, “The best way to deal with this issue is a direct dialogue between the parties and reaching an agreement on borders.”

Nuland added that condemnations at the United Nations Security Council “will not change the situation on the ground. The sides should return to the table and solve problems.”