In a blow to the Trump administration and Israeli diplomacy, 128 countries voted in favor of a resolution to declare the US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital “null and void.” Nine countries opposed and 35 others abstained from the vote.

The UN General Assembly

The UN General Assembly Photo credit: Reuters/Israel News Company

On Thursday, the UN General Assembly approved by an overwhelming majority a resolution to reject the US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital, with 128 member states voting in favor of the resolution introduced by a group of Arab countries.Only nine countries voted against the resolution and 35 abstained, including Canada, Australia, Mexico and Argentina.

Although the vote does not have any operative significance and is merely declarative, the US and Israel conducted heavy diplomatic efforts in order to convince as many nations as possible to abstain or oppose the resolution. Besides the US and Israel, Togo, Micronesia, the Marshall Islands, Honduras, Guatemala, Nauru and Palau were the only countries to vote against rejecting the US recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

Resolution unanimously approved

Resolution unanimously approved Photo Credit: UN

Speaking before the assembly prior to the vote, Palestinian Authority Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki said, “The American decision will not impact the status of Jerusalem as the holy city. Rather, it will impact the status of the US as a mediator of peace.”

Israeli Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon harshly condemned the countries that had said they would support the resolution, calling them “puppets being pulled by the strings of the Palestinian puppet masters.”

“You are blind to the lies, blind to the manipulation surrounding you,” Danon said. “I have no doubt that today’s resolution will end up in the trash bin of history. No UNESCO declaration, no empty speeches, will ever drive us away from Jerusalem,” he added.

As reported earlier today on JOL prior to the vote, US envoy Nikki Haley slammed the UN for its “hostility” towards Israel and implied, once again, that the US may choose to decrease its funding of the UN if it continues to “disrespect” it.

“To its shame, the United Nations has long been a hostile place for the State of Israel,” Haley said. “I’ve often wondered why, in the face of such hostility, Israel has chosen to remain a member of this body.”