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US sidelined as 128 countries defy Trump to support UN Resolution on Jerusalem

Thursday December 21, 2017 11:32 PM, & Agencies

Masjid al Aqsa Jerusalem

United Nations:
A total of 128 countries defied President Donald Trump on Thursday and voted in favor of a United Nations General Assembly resolution calling for the United States to withdraw its decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

Trump had threatened to cut off financial aid to countries that voted in favor. His warning did appear to have some impact with nine countries voting against the resolution and 35 abstaining. A total of 128 countries voted for the resolution.

The 193-nation assembly will also decide on a draft resolution reaffirming that Jerusalem is an issue that must be resolved through negotiations and that any decision on its status must be rescinded.

Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Malki said that the draft resolution to be voted on by the United Nations General Assembly today does not mean "we bear hostility to the US".

He said from the UN platform that the resolution was "to uphold the voice of the international community, which was embodied by the reactions of people and governments around the world."

Al-Malki thanked the Arab States, the Islamic Cooperation Countries and the Non-Aligned Movement who called for this emergency meeting following the US veto in the Security Council against an Egyptian decision calling on US President Donald Trump to back down from his stance on Jerusalem.

Malki said that the US decision on Jerusalem fuels religious feelings and serves Israel's interests.

"The United States missed an opportunity to reverse its decision, ignoring the calls of the international community to respect international legitimacy," he said.

The UN General Assembly voted on Thursday three days after a similar resolution was blocked in the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) because of the negative vote by the United States.

A negative vote or veto from one of the Council's five permanent members China, France, Russia, United Kingdom and the United States blocks passage of a resolution.

Therefore UNSC resolution Monday was rejected despite support from the other four permanent members and from the ten non-permanent members.

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