Several weeks ago, President Donald Trump made headlines when he upended decades of international agreement and decided to move the American embassy in Israel to Jerusalem. While Israel’s capital is officially Jerusalem, most of the international community keeps its embassies in Tel Aviv to avoid inciting violence in the region. Jerusalem is recognized as a holy city by numerous religious groups.
Following his decision, Egypt drafted a resolution for the United Nations that would ban all embassies in that city over such religious insensitivity. They did not call out President Trump, but expressed “deep regret at recent decisions concerning the status of Jerusalem.”
When the resolution was put to a vote, 14 nations voted in favor of it, but the U.S. used its veto. American Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, placed the sole vote against the resolution.
Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, said Trump’s decision and Haley’s veto are “unacceptable and threaten the stability of the international community because it disrespects it”.
Nikki Haley, however, was angry. She called the resolution “an insult” that she and the Trump administration would remember. “The United States will not be told by any country where we can put our embassy,” she said.
“It’s scandalous to say we are putting back peace efforts,” she continued. “The fact that this veto is being done in defense of American sovereignty and in defense of America’s role in the Middle East peace process is not a source of embarrassment for us; it should be an embarrassment to the remainder of the security council.”
The Israeli prime minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, responded to the decision on Twitter. He wrote, “Thank you, Ambassador Haley. On Hanukkah, you spoke like a Maccabi. You lit a candle of truth. You dispel the darkness. One defeated the many. Truth defeated lies. Thank you, President Trump.”