Gilad Erdan
Gilad Erdan Marc Israel Sellem/POOL

Israel's Internal Security Minister Gilad Erdan (Likud) mocked a largely symbolic anti-Israel vote denouncing America’s recent recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, which passed the United Nations General Assembly by a margin of 128 to 9, with 35 abstentions.

"The historic connection between Israel and Jerusalem is stronger than any vote by the ‘United Nations’- nations who are united only by their fear and their refusal to recognize the simple truth that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel and the Jewish people,” said Erdan.

The US, Israel and seven other member states voted against the resolution, including Guatemala, Honduras, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Palau, and Togo.

“While the US has recognized this simple truth, the UN has chosen once again to resort to lies and to ignore the reality that has existed for 70 years.”

Erdan downplayed the significance of the vote, which affirmed a non-binding resolution calling President Trump’s December 6th recognition of Jerusalem “null and void”. Israel, Erdan said, would continue to build in Jerusalem despite the vote.

“Our response to the UN campaign by Abu Mazen [Mahmoud Abbas] and his supporters against the US and Israel will be to strengthen our sovereignty, security, and construction in every part of Jerusalem.”

“The Palestinians can threaten and the UN can vote- we will continue to build and strengthen our capital Jerusalem."

Earlier this week, the US vetoed a proposed Security Council resolution also denouncing America’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

Before Thursday’s vote, President Donald Trump warned General Assembly member-states which receive American aid that the US would be “watching” which countries vote with the US, and which vote against it on the resolution.

“They take hundreds of millions of dollars and even billions of dollars, and then they vote against us. Well, we’re watching those votes. Let them vote against us. We’ll save a lot. We don’t care,” he told reporters before the Cabinet meeting, according to Reuters.