The United Nations General Assembly has overwhelmingly adopted a resolution strongly deploring the establishment of Israeli settlements from voting.
SV Rumanian delegates speaking
SV Delegates, including Israel, listening
SV Iranian delegate speaking
SV Delegates listening
SV Tunisian delegates speaking
In condemning Israel's actions in setting up the settlements, the General Assembly resolution called on Israel to stop trying to change the legal, geographical or population status of the occupied territories. Israel cast the only dissenting vote; seven countries, including the United States, abstained, and another 10 did not answer the roll call.
In a statement after the vote, israeli ambassador Chaim Herzog said: "The United Nations has condemned israel once again. So what else is new?". And in Jerusalem, Government officials said the resolution harmed prospects of peace in the region. Officials also said that the American decision to abstain from voting came as no surprise to them.
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Background: The United Nations General Assembly has overwhelmingly adopted a resolution strongly deploring the establishment of Israeli settlements from voting. Throughout the debate, speakers condemned Israeli action in setting up the settlements.
SYNOPSIS: Counsellor Aurel Gehorghe, of Rumania, said the Israeli measures were incompatible with international law. He told delegates that what israel was doing was to increase tension in the area, and to damage the interests of the people living there.
As the Israeli delegate listened... the condemnation continued. More came from Iran's Ambassador Fereydoun Hoveyda.
The iranian Ambassador continued the onslaught saying the current situation was an alarming one in a part of the world already fraught with danger. Israel, he said, was carrying on at a time when serious efforts were under way to settle the Middle East issue.
When it was the turn of the Tunisians, their delegate hoped something constructive would come out of the debate. Tunisia was a sponsor of the resolution, and Ambassador Mahmoud Mistri said his country hoped condemnation of Israeli actions would bring her back to the negotiating table in Geneva.