Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reacted Saturday night to the resolution in the UN General Assembly to have the International Court of Justice in the Hague discuss the "occupation" of Judea, Samaria, and Jerusalem.
"Just like the hundreds of distorted UN General Assembly resolutions against Israel over the years, today's disgraceful resolution will not obligate the Government of Israel.." Nteanyahu said. "The Jewish people is not occupying its land and is not occupying its eternal capital Jerusalem. No UN resolution can distort this historical truth."
"In recent days, I have spoken with world leaders who changed their votes as a result. Together with President Isaac Herzog, Israeli Ambassador to the UN Gilad Erdan and the personnel at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, we have achieved something important. In the UN resolution that was passed in November, the Palestinians had an absolute majority of UN member states that supported their initiative. Those that did not support it – that opposed, abstained or were absent – were in the minority.
"Now, after our intervention, 11 countries changed how they voted and as a result there has been a turnaround: The countries that supported the Palestinian initiative were a minority of UN members and those that did not support the Palestinians were a majority of UN member states. I would like to thank President Isaac Herzog, Israeli Ambassador to the UN and the personnel at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for their cooperation in bringing about this important achievement. We will continue to fight for the truth." the Prime Minister said.
The resolution was passed by a majority of 87 to 26, with all the Arab countries that have diplomatic relations with Israel supporting the measure, as well as Russia and China.
The resolution prejudged the status of the Jewish presence in Jerusalem, Judea and Samaria, stating that Israel's presence in Jerusalem and Judea and Samaria is illegal and asks the Court to recommend the steps that the UN and countries around the world should take against Israel which, according to the proposal, constitutes "annexation" of the territories.
Israel's Ambassador to the United Nations Gilad Erdan said ahead of Friday’s vote, "The outrageous resolution calling for the advisory opinion of the International Court of Justice is a moral stain on the UN and every country that supports it. No international body can decide that the Jewish people are ‘occupiers’ in their own homeland. Any decision from a judicial body which receives its mandate from the morally bankrupt and politicized UN is completely illegitimate.”
“The Palestinians have rejected every peace initiative, while supporting and inciting terror. Instead of pushing the Palestinians to change, the UN is doing the opposite: helping them to harm the only vibrant democracy in the Middle East which recently signed 4 peace agreements with Arab countries. We will not take part in this disgraceful show of lies," he added.
Ambassador Erdan continued, "The decision to hold a vote that deals with Israel on Shabbat is another example of the moral decay of the UN, which prevents Israel's position from being heard in a vote whose results are predetermined."
In light of the voting time taking place on Shabbat, Ambassador Erdan announced that he would not speak at the meeting and that the United States Mission to the UN would vote against the proposed resolution on behalf of the State of Israel.
The office of Palestinian Authority chairman Mahmoud Abbas said following the vote: "This vote is a testament to the support of the entire world for our people and their indisputable historical rights. President Mahmoud Abbas thanks all the countries that stood by the Palestinian and their rights, and all the parties that worked to bring about this decision."