A Lebanon-based Palestinian organisation linked to Hamas was denied special status by the UN’s Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC).

The Palestinian Association for Human Rights -“Witness” – purports to deal with the rights of Palestinian refugees in Lebanon. However, according to a statement released by Israel’s UN Mission, “Witness” is a part of Hamas, and “acts on its behalf against Israel as part of a network of institutions and organizations the terrorist organisation operates outside the Gaza Strip.”

In Thursday’s vote, 28 of 47 countries opposed the application. The opponents included Brazil, Canada, Colombia, France, Germany, India, Ireland, Japan, Korea, Ukraine, the United Kingdom and the United States, while supporters included Egypt, Iran, Morocco, Pakistan, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Venezuela and Yemen.

“Hamas has learned that it has no immunity in Gaza, and now not in the international community,” Israeli Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon said. “The UN should declare Hamas a terrorist organisation and not recognise its affiliates in any international forum. We demand that the United Nations act uncompromisingly against terrorist organisations that are attempting to engage in political terror against the State of Israel.”