UN General Assembly rejects United States resolution to condemn Hamas

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A United Nations resolution condemning Hamas was always going to fail and should have been dropped because Nikki Haley, the U.S. ambassador, never had the votes for the required two-thirds majority in the General Assembly.

Before the assembly voted on the text, the 193-member world body had narrowly voted to require a two-thirds majority for approval as sought by Arab nations, rather than the simple majority urged by the United States. The resolution ultimately picked up a plurality of 87 votes in support and 57 against - with 33 abstentions.

The resolution was one of outgoing U.S.

Sami Abu Zahri, a spokesman for Hamas, the militant group that has ruled the Gaza Strip since 2007, wrote on Twitter after the vote: "The failure of the American venture at the United Nations represents a slap to the U.S. administration and confirmation of the legitimacy of the resistance".

The last time the United States put forth a motion condemning Hamas, in June, the vote was 62-58 in favor, with 42 abstentions - a smaller plurality that also failed to reach a 2/3 threshold.

Saudi Arabia's UN Ambassador Abdallah Al-Mouallimi, reflecting the Arab view, said the USA resolution would "undermine the two-state solution which we aspire to".

PLO Executive Committee member Hanan Ashrawi welcomed the failure of the resolution, which, she said, "targeted our people, the national movement and the Palestine national struggle".

"The time has come for all countries to take a stance on whether they are for or against Hamas' violence", said the letter addressed to envoys from Morocco, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Egypt, Qatar, Jordan, Bahrain and Oman. And it reaffirms "unwavering support. for the two-state solution of Israel and Palestine, living side by side in peace and security within recognized borders, based on the pre-1967 borders". Isn't it time to let that go?

The UN General Assembly voted in favor of a resolution calling to end the Israeli occupation of Palestinian territories, current President of the UN General Assembly Maria Espinosa said in a statement. "Is the hatred toward Israel so strong that you'll defend a terrorist organization?"

The resolution failed to be adopted Thursday as it could not garner two-thirds support in the General Assembly. It is also an indication that a majority of United Nations member states do not believe that the issue can be resolved by Israeli force and propaganda imposing a solution on the Palestinians.

"Your silence in the face of evil reveals your true colors", he said.

That is why Israel's Ambassador at the United Nations, resorted to calling legitimate resistance "evil" in his response. And he said it would also turn attention away from Israel's occupation, settlement activities and "blockade" - whether in Gaza, the West Bank or east Jerusalem which the Palestinians want as their future capital. He said that all those who voted in favor of the resolution "should feel ashamed of their hypocrisy and ignorance of the reality". According to Danon, who opposes the two-state solution, this was simply, "Another anti-Israel resolution".

He said Washington has emboldened Israel to continue its "inhuman practices" against Palestinians in clear violation of worldwide law. "The victory will be in addition to the Palestinian right, no matter how long". Israel's Ambassador Danny Danon told the assembly the vote had been hijacked by the procedural maneuver.

Top Photo | United States Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley arrives for a security council at United Nations headquarters, November 26, 2018.

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