The United States opposed on Friday for the first time an annual resolution condemning Israeli control over the Golan Heights at the United Nations. The US has abstained in previous years on the anti-Israel resolution.
At the start of the weekly Cabinet meeting, PM Netanyahu thanked President Trump and US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley for voting against the resolution that condemns the presence of Israeli forces on the Golan.
“We have been talking with our American friends for some time about the present administration’s new policy at the UN. Last Thursday the US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman updated me that the US had decided to vote against the traditional resolution condemning us for being on the Golan Heights. And this indeed happened. I would like to thank President Trump and Ambassador Haley on this important and just vote that is completely in keeping with my policy – Israel will always remain on the Golan Heights, and the Golan Heights will always remain in our hands”.
“The United States will no longer abstain when the United Nations engages in its useless annual vote on the Golan Heights,” Ambassador Haley said in a statement.
“The resolution is plainly biased against Israel. Further, the atrocities the Syrian regime continues to commit prove its lack of fitness to govern anyone,” she added.
The Syrian regime’s “atrocities prove its lack of fitness to govern anyone.” The Iranian presence inside Syria presents “major threats to international security” and “ISIS and other terrorist groups remain in Syria,” she added.
Following the announcement, Israel’s ambassador to the UN Danny Danon thanked Haley for her decision to vote “no on a despicable resolution.”
“It is time the world distinguishes those who stabilize the region from those who sow terror,” he wrote on Twitter.
Strategic Affairs Minister Gilad Erdan also responded. “The Golan is part of Israel and it will always be. There is no sane person who thinks that the Golan will return to the murderer Assad and the Iranian regime, which is trying to establish a ‘Syrian Hezbollah’ in the region,” he tweeted.
Israel captured 1,200 square kilometers (460 square miles) of the Golan Heights from Syria in the Six-Day War of 1967 and later annexed it in a move never recognized by the international community.