“Any decisions and actions which purport to have altered the character, status or demographic composition of the Holy City of Jerusalem have no legal effect, are null and void and must be rescinded in compliance with relevant resolutions of the Security Council.”  — UNGA, December 21, 2017

The United Nations General Assembly Thursday adopted a resolution rejecting US President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and plans to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

A total of 128 countries voted in favor of the resolution, nine countries voted against, including the US and Israel, meanwhile 35 decided to abstain, including Canada, Australia and Mexico.

Palestinians welcomed the resolution and plans to move the US embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

The Palestinian  presidency, Thursday, welcomed the UN General Assembly’s vote on a resolution regarding the legal status of the city of Jerusalem.

Presidential Spokesman Nabil Abu Rudeina said the decision once again reflects the international community’s position with the Palestinian people, which did not give way to being threatened or blackmailed.

“This decision reaffirms once again that the just Palestinian cause enjoys the support of international community, and no decisions made by any side could change the reality, that Jerusalem is an occupied territory under international law.”

He added, according to the PNN, “We will continue our efforts at the United Nations and all international forums to put an end to this occupation and to establish our Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital,” Abu Rudeina said.

“We thank all the countries that supported the resolution and expressed their free political will, despite all the pressure exerted on them,” and stressing their full support for international law and the right of the Palestinian people to freedom and independence.

Dr. Saeb Erekat, Secretary of the Executive Committee of  Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO), said that this day is a historic day in which the peoples and nations stand together for international law, which represents humanity and justice against the language of dictates.

Erekat said, in an interview, that the international resolution  in UN General Assembly represents a rejection of the policy of those who want to impose their vision by force, considering  the voting a victory for the Palestinian people and a victory for the peace process.

Erekat expressed the hope that the international community will continue its steps in this direction to achieve justice, peace and freedom in this part of the world.

Erekat also described the emergency session of the United Nations General Assembly  “Uniting for Peace”  historic session that re-examined international law and legitimacy.

At the end of his talk to PNN, Erekat called on all countries to translate this vote by recognizing State of Palestine on  1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital, and supporting all steps of the leadership in its quest to get rid of the last occupation in the world.

The Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions National Committee (BNC) voiced its approval with the following statement:

Today, in an emergency session, the overwhelming majority of the world’s nations at the UN General Assembly voted 128-9 in favor of a resolution calling on the United States to overturn its decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

This “collective act of defiance” took place despite threats from Trump’s ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, to “take names” of countries voting against the United States and Israel, and threats by Trump to cut US aid to those countries.

Israel’s ambassador to the UN accused the world body’s members of being “puppets” to the “Palestinian puppet masters”, following Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu’s description of the UN as a “house of lies.”

The resounding failure by Israel and the US administration to thwart the pro-Palestinian vote at the UN General Assembly follows a similarly embarrassing UN Security Council vote on Monday which also rejected the US-Israeli position 14-1.

Omar Barghouti, speaking on behalf of the Palestinian BDS National Committee (BNC), the largest coalition in Palestinian civil society, responded by saying:

This vote is further proof that the far-right Israeli-Trump alliance is more isolated than ever as the overwhelming majority of nations are finally recognizing its fatal attempt to undermine both Palestinian rights and the very rule of international law. Holding Israel accountable for its egregious, decades-old human rights violations is crucial to upholding both.

To defend the UN against this thuggery by Israel and the Trump administration, the BDS movement calls for meaningful sanctions, especially a military embargo and intensified boycott and divestment measures against Israel’s regime of oppression. BDS today is not only crucial for realizing Palestinian freedom, justice and equality. It is also critical to stopping Trump, Netanyahu and other leaders of the international far-right who are threatening world peace and global justice like never before.

All European states, with a few exceptions that abstained, voted in favor of the Palestinian position on occupied Jerusalem, and so did Japan, China, India, Nigeria, Brazil, Korea, Russia, and South Africa, among many others.

Favoring concrete sanctions to merely symbolic gestures of solidarity with the Palestinian liberation struggle, South Africa’s ruling African National Congress (ANC) at its general conference yesterday unanimously adopted downgrading diplomatic ties with Israel. “[It] sends a clear message to Israel that there is a price to pay for its human rights abuses and violations of international law,” the ANC said in a statement.

The Palestinian BDS National Committee (BNC) is the largest coalition in Palestinian civil society. It leads and supports the global Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement for Palestinian rights.

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