In a surprising break from previous years, 13 countries voted to oppose an annual resolution supporting a pro-Palestinian UN agency traditionally critical of Israel.
The resolution, which includes a call to halt Israeli settlements being constructed in the West Bank, still passed with a large majority voting in favour of continuing to support the Palestinian cause and finding a “Peaceful Settlement of the Question of Palestine”, as the resolution is titled.
However, for the very first time, Germany, the Czech Republic, Austria, Bulgaria, Denmark, Estonia, Greece, Lithuania, the Netherlands, Romania, Slovakia, Brazil, and Colombia voted against the resolution regarding the Division of Palestinian Rights at the UN Secretariat.
“I am pleased that this significant group of countries has decided today to voice a clear moral stance against discrimination toward Israel at the UN,” Foreign Minister Israel Katz said in a statement.
“This represents an important step in the long struggle against the prejudiced bias toward Israel at the United Nations. Particularly noticeable is the shift in the stance of several member states of the European Union and I trust that the remaining EU members will adopt this position soon.”