Israeli officials are reacting with their predictable level of outrage after the UN Security Council voted 14-0 to call for an end to Israeli settlement construction in the occupied territories. The United States abstained from the vote, making it the first time in 36 years the US didn’t veto a settlement-themed resolution.
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu blamed President Obama entirely, saying that Obama was “colluding against Israel” in not vetoing the resolution, insisting that he “looks forward to working with President-elect Trump to undermine the resolution. Netanyahu also announced sanctions against Senegal and New Zealand for co-sponsoring the effort.
The White House denied that Obama had any role in formulating the resolution, though officials did insist that the reason the US did not veto it was because they agreed fully with the language within. They also rejected claims by other Israeli officials that the US has “abandoned Israel.”
Moreover, the White House said the US could “not in good conscience” veto the resolution because it was the result of a series of policy choices made by Netanyahu, and that the US sees Netanyahu’s acceleration of settlement construction as a serious threat to the peace process.