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Friday, 8 December 2017

‘Israel won’t be bullied into agreement by the United Nations’ : US envoy Haley

UN Security Council meeting
Speaking at the UN Security Council meeting, the American ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, has said that "Israel will never be bullied into an agreement by the United Nations” or countries with a disregard for Israel’s security.


Haley has also said that the US has not yet taken a position on the boundaries and border of Jerusalem, nor is it calling for changes to the existing arrangements on holy sites. She also reiterated the US commitment to the peace process, which she said has credibility with both Israelis and Palestinians.

UN Middle East envoy: Risk of violent escalation

Earlier, United Nations' Middle East envoy responded to Donald Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, warning of the risk of "violent escalation" following the US president's announcement.

Nickolay Mladenov said that Trump's decision has caused "anxiety across the Middle East and beyond," but has been "widely welcomed in Israel." He went on to state that he is "particularly concerned about the potential risk of violent escalation."

"We continue to follow developments on the ground very closely. We all understand and respect the symbolic religious and emotional charge that Jerusalem holds for people across the region and beyond."

Israel: US has courage to right historic wrongs

Israeli ambassador Danny Danon praised the “courage” of the American decision, describing it as a “milestone for Israel, for peace and the world.” Holding up an ancient coin from 67 AD with “Jerusalem the Holy” inscribed on its face, Danon recounted the significance of Jerusalem to Jewish history and beliefs, and condemned the UN for its past resolutions.

“The United States has the courage to right historic wrongs,” Danon said, comparing Trump’s decision to President Truman’s recognition of Israel in 1948, and calling on the rest of the world to move their capitals to Jerusalem.

Palestine: US disqualified from peacekeeping role 

Palestinian envoy Riyad Mansour called the US decision a “direct contravention of Security Council resolutions” that would have “far-reaching consequences”.

 “The Israeli government’s glee at this decision underscores that the decision made today was instigated by the occupying power,” he said, before accusing Israel of undermining the peace process and the two-state solution on pre-1967 lines.

 “Complicity must be recognized – the US decision disqualifies its leadership role in making peace in the region,” Mansour said.

UK: Jerusalem should be shared capital of Israeli and Palestinian states

The United Kingdom's envoy to the UN, Matthew Rycroft, said his country's position on the status of Jerusalem is "clear and long-standing." He stressed that the city "should ultimately be the shared capital of the Israeli and Palestinian states."

He went on to say that Britain "disagrees" with the US decision to recognize Jerusalem as the Israeli capital, and to move its embassy to Jerusalem. He said the UK has no intention of moving its embassy in Israel away from its current location in Tel Aviv.

Rycroft also stressed the "fundamental necessity of maintaining the status quo" at holy sites in the area, particularly the Temple Mount.

"We will continue to press the parties to refrain from actions which make a viable peace more difficult to achieve," Rycroft said.

France: 'Greatly alarmed by risks of escalation'

Meanwhile, France said it "regrets" Trump's decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital, adding that the status of the city "must be determined by the parties under a peace agreement."

"France is a friend of the Palestinian, we are a friend of the Israels as well. For this reason, we seek to speak truth by calling upon them to return to the negotiating table. Indeed, there is no short cut in the difficult path towards peace. This requires negotiations and respect for the other."

The country called on all sides to exercise restraint, while also stating that Paris is "greatly alarmed by risks of escalation on the ground" following Trump's announcement.
 rt.com
 8/12/17

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