Photo: Reuters
UN Security Council
Photo: Reuters

UNSC to vote Thursday on end to Israeli settlements

A draft UN Security Council resolution demanding a halt to Israeli building in the West Bank will be voted on in a meeting on Thursday in New York; Israeli leaders are calling on the United States to veto the resolution.

UNITED NATIONS- Egypt circulated a draft UN resolution Wednesday night that demands a halt to Israeli settlement activities in the West Bank and declares that existing settlements "have no legal validity" and are "a flagrant violation" of international law.



The proposed resolution also stresses that "the cessation of all Israeli settlement activities is essential for salvaging the two-state solution" which would see Israelis and Palestinians living side-by-side in peace.


The Security Council scheduled a meeting at 3:00pm EST (10:00pm Israel time) Thursday to vote on the draft resolution.


UN Security Council (Photo: Reuters) (Photo: Reuters)
UN Security Council (Photo: Reuters)

Much of the international community considers Israeli settlements illegal and backs the establishment of a Palestinian state, even though a deal appears to be increasingly complicated.


But Egypt's call for a speedy vote leaves almost no time for negotiations among the 15 council members, and some language in the draft is highly likely to be unacceptable to the United States, Israel's closest ally and a veto-wielding council member.


Israel's UN Ambassador Danny Danon said the resolution "will do nothing to promote a diplomatic process, and will only reward the Palestinian policy of incitement and terror."


"We expect our greatest ally not to allow this one-sided and anti-Israel resolution to be adopted by the council," he said.


Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has rejected those terms saying negotiations should take place without conditions.


Israeli Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon (Photo: UN) (Photo: UN)
Israeli Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon (Photo: UN)


In September, the international diplomatic "quartet" of Mideast peacemakers called for Israel and the Palestinians to take steps to resume stalled peace talks.


Riyad Mansour, the Palestinian UN ambassador, has said a cessation of all Israeli settlement activities and an end to its nearly 50-year occupation of "Palestinian territory" are necessary for a comprehensive peace agreement. The West Bank was captured by Israel from Jordan in the Six Day War of 1967, while the Gaza Strip was captured from Egypt during that same war.


But the gaps between Israeli and Palestinian leaders remain wide, preventing any meaningful talks since 2009.


The draft resolution calls for intensified and accelerated international and regional diplomatic efforts "aimed at achieving, without delay a comprehensive, just and lasting peace in the Middle East."


New Zealand, a non-permanent council member, has been pushing a separate resolution that would set out the parameters of a peace settlement.


פרסום ראשון: 12.22.16, 08:49
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