King­dom’s UN am­bas­sador speaks out against Ha­mas res­o­lu­tion

Arab News - - News Saudi Arabia - AP Wash­ing­ton Saudi Ara­bia’s Am­bas­sador to the UN, Ab­dal­lah Al-Moual­limi, dur­ing a key ses­sion in New York. AP

The King­dom’s am­bas­sador to the United Nations spoke out against a US-spon­sored draft res­o­lu­tion that would have con­demned Ha­mas for the first time.

US Am­bas­sador Nikki Haley told the Gen­eral Assem­bly be­fore the vote that it could make his­tory and un­con­di­tion­ally speak out against Ha­mas, which she called “one of the most ob­vi­ous and grotesque cases of ter­ror­ism in the world.”

Ab­dal­lah Al-Moual­limi said the res­o­lu­tion would “un­der­mine the two-state so­lu­tion which we as­pire to” and that it would also turn at­ten­tion away from Is­rael’s oc­cu­pa­tion, set­tle­ment ac­tiv­i­ties and “block­ade” — whether in Gaza, the West Bank or East Jerusalem, which the Pales­tini­ans want as their fu­ture cap­i­tal. The res­o­lu­tion failed.

Pales­tinian Pres­i­dent Mah­moud Ab­bas, whose Fatah party is locked in a bit­ter decade-long split with Ha­mas, wel­comed the de­feat.

“The Pales­tinian pres­i­dency will not al­low for the con­dem­na­tion of the na­tional Pales­tinian strug­gle.”

But Is­rael’s Prime Minister Ben­jamin Ne­tanyahu praised the “large ma­jor­ity” — 87 coun­tries — “that took a stance against Ha­mas” for the first time, call­ing it “an im­por­tant achieve­ment for the United States and Is­rael.”

The US at­tempt to con­demn Ha­mas and de­mand that the mil­i­tant group stop fir­ing rock­ets into Is­rael, us­ing “air­borne in­cen­di­ary de­vices” and putting civil­ians at risk sparked a Pales­tinian-backed amend­ment spon­sored by Bo­livia.

It out­lined the ba­sis for com­pre­hen­sive Is­raeli-Pales­tinian peace and re­ferred to a De­cem­ber 2016 Se­cu­rity Coun­cil res­o­lu­tion that con­demned Is­raeli set­tle­ments in the West Bank and east Jerusalem as a “fla­grant vi­o­la­tion” of in­ter­na­tional law. It also reaf­firmed “un­wa­ver­ing sup­port” for a two-state so­lu­tion to the Is­raeliPales­tinian con­flict — is­sues not in­cluded in the US draft.

But be­fore the vote on the US draft res­o­lu­tion, Bo­li­vian Am­bas­sador Sasha Llorentty Soliz with­drew the amend­ment.

That was be­cause the Pales­tini­ans and their sup­port­ers wanted a vote in­stead on a short ri­val res­o­lu­tion ti­tled “Com­pre­hen­sive, just and last­ing peace in the Mid­dle East” spon­sored by Ire­land that in­cluded the ex­act lan­guage of the amend­ment — but no men­tion of Ha­mas.

Ir­ish res­o­lu­tion

Af­ter the US draft on Ha­mas failed to win adop­tion, the Gen­eral Assem­bly over­whelm­ingly ap­proved the Ir­ish res­o­lu­tion by a vote of 156-6, with 12 ab­sten­tions.

It calls for “the achieve­ment, with­out de­lay” of last­ing Mideast peace on the ba­sis of UN res­o­lu­tions, sin­gling out the De­cem­ber 2016 mea­sure. And it reaf­firms “un­wa­ver­ing sup­port ... for the two-state so­lu­tion of Is­rael and Pales­tine, liv­ing side by side in peace and se­cu­rity within rec­og­nized bor­ders, based on the pre-1967 bor­ders.”

The ri­val res­o­lu­tions re­flect the deep di­vi­sions among the 193 UN mem­ber states over the decades-old Is­raeli-Pales­tinian con­flict — and the fail­ure to end it.

Haley sharply crit­i­cized the United Nations as hav­ing an anti-Is­rael bias, not­ing that “over the years, the UN has voted to con­demn Is­rael over 500 times” — an av­er­age of 20 times a year.

She stressed that Ha­mas’ char­ter “openly calls for the de­struc­tion of Is­rael” and cited a va­ri­ety of “bar­baric ter­ror­ist tac­tics” it has used in­clud­ing sui­cide bombers and thou­sands of rock­ets, flam­ing kites and bal­loons.

Haley called con­dem­na­tion of Ha­mas “an es­sen­tial step” to a peace set­tle­ment.

US en­voyNikki Haley said be­fore the vote that it could make his­tory and un­con­di­tion­ally speak out against Ha­mas.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Saudi Arabia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.