During a Chanukah candle-lighting ceremony on Motzei Shabbos, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said the UN Security Council’s Resolution 2334 was distorted and shameful.
“Citizens of Israel,” he said, “I want to calm you down. The decision reached yesterday in the UN is distorted and shameful, but we shall overcome it. The decision makes the Jewish Quarter of Jerusalem’s Old City ‘occupied’ territory – that’s delusional. It says that the Western Wall, the Kotel, is ‘occupied’ territory – that’s just as delusional. There is nothing more absurd than calling the Western Wall and Jewish Quarter occupied territory.”
“This is a failed attempt to force the conditions of a final agreement on Israel. Their last attempt to accomplish this was led by President Carter, who was totally hostile to Israel and just recently said that Hamas is not a terror group,” Netanyahu continued. “Carter passed anti-Israel resolutions in the UN, similar to these resolutions, but he did not succeed. We opposed his resolutions and nothing happened.
“All the American presidents after Carter have stood by the US promise not to allow the UN to force Israel to do anything. Yesterday, US President Barack Obama violated this promise – as well as his own promise from 2011- when he did not use his veto power to veto this anti-Israel resolution in the UN.
“Not only does this decision not bring peace closer, it in fact pushes peace farther away. It is an affront to justice, to truth. Think about how absurd it is. Half a million people slaughtered in Syria, tens of thousands in Sudan, the entire Middle East is in flames and Obama’s government and the Security Council decide to attack the only democracy in the Middle Est – Israel. How shameful!
“My friends, on this first night of Chanukah, I want to tell you that it will do them no good. We will completely oppose this resolution, as we did when the UN decided that ‘Zionism is Racism.’ That decision was revoked and so will this one be. It just takes time. And it won’t be revoked by our giving in, but by our standing strong with our allies at our side. I remind you that we left Gaza, destroyed communities, and removed people from their graves. Did that help us at the UN in any way? Did it improve the UN’s attitude to us? We got thousands of rockets on our heads from Gaza and the Goldstone Report from the UN.
Friday’s decision is a call to arms for all of Israel’s friends in the US, and all those who are sick of the anti-Israel bias in the UN. Those who come to curse us, will end up blessing us instead,” Netanyahu concluded, referring to the biblical story of Balaam.
Netanyahu also announced he had instructed officials to cut off 30 million NIS ($7.8 million) worth of funding for five UN bodies which are particularly hostile to Israel. More such action will follow, he promised.
In addition, Netanyahu said he had recalled Israel’s ambassadors from New Zealand and Senegal, two of the four countries which sponsored the resolution and have diplomatic relations with Israel. As well, Israeli aid to Senegal has also been halted.
UN Resolution 2334 states that all building in Judea, Samaria, and eastern Jerusalem is completely illegal, violates international law, and harms potential for a two-state solution. The resolution requires Israel to immediately cease all building in all areas outside of the pre-1967 borders, and states that the UN will not recognize anything outside the pre-1967 borders unless it has been formally agreed upon by both Israel and the Palestinian Authority. The United States abstained.
The Palestinian Authority refuses to discuss beginning direct negotiations with Israel before its preconditions are met.