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East Jerusalem The Capital of Palestine

  • Murad Ali
  • Jan, 2018
  • 88
  • Middle East

Israel captured the eastern part of the city in the 1967 Middle East  war and now claims all of Jerusalem as its undivided capital

On Dec 22, 2017, the United Nations General Assembly voted against the US President Mr. Donald Trump’s decision to shift their embassy from  Tel Aviv Jerusalem against the international law despite Trump Administration’s  threat to retaliate against nations that exercise sovereign right in UN to oppose US position on Jerusalem. The members of United Nation General Assembly voted 128 against the US decision, 9 in favor while 35 countries abstained, and 21 were absent. In this way, they declared US President Donald Trump's declaration of Jerusalem as Israel's capital "null and void"

The United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution on 21 December effectively calling on the US to withdraw its recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. The text says that any decisions regarding the status of the city are “null and void” and must be cancelled. The non-binding resolution was approved by 128 states with nine against and 35 abstentions.

Those voting in favour included four permanent members of the Security Council (China, France, Russia and the UK) as well as key US allies in the Muslim world. The nine negatives were the US, Israel, Guatemala, Honduras, the Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, Palau and Togo and the abstentions included Canada, Mexico, Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary, Romania and Latvia. There were 21 countries that did not turn up for the vote.

Just a few days ago, on December 18, the US vetoed a draft United Nations resolution rejecting US President Donald Trump’s decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and asserting that any decisions on the status of Jerusalem “have no legal effect; are null and void and must be rescinded.” Egypt put forward the draft resolution which mentioned that Jerusalem is an issue “to be resolved through negotiations” between Israel and the Palestinians and expressed “deep regret at recent decisions concerning the status of Jerusalem,” without specifically mentioning Trump’s move. All other 10 non permanent and four permanent members including key US allies Britain, France, Italy, Japan, and Ukraine were among the 15-member Security Council which is an executive arm of the UN in political matters.

Under the Charter, the Security Council has primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security. It has 15 members, and each member has one vote. The Council has five permanent members: China, France, Russian Federation, the United Kingdom and the United States. Permanent members can veto any resolution presented to the Council, which requires nine votes for adoption. Under the Charter, all Member States are obligated to comply with Council decisions. All members of the United Nations agree to accept and carry out the decisions of the Security Council. While other organs of the United Nations make recommendations to member states, only the Security Council has the power to make decisions that member states are then obligated to implement under the Charter.

Israel captured the eastern part of the city in the 1967 Middle East war and now claims all of Jerusalem as its undivided capital. The Palestinians view the East Jerusalem as the capital of their Palestinian state. Under Chapter VI of the UN Charter, the Security Council  unanimously adopted on November 22, 1967, Resolution 242 (S/RES/242) in the aftermath of the Six-Day War. The preamble of the resolution, which was sponsored by British ambassador Lord Caradon, refers to the “inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by war and the need to work for a just and lasting peace in which every State in the area can live in security.” The operative part affirms that the fulfilment of Charter principles requires the establishment of a just and lasting peace in the Middle East which should include the application of both the following principles: (i) Withdrawal of Israel armed forces from territories occupied in the recent conflict; (ii) Termination of all claims or states of belligerency and respect and acknowledgment of the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of every State in the area and their right to live in peace within secure and recognized boundaries free from threats or acts of force. Resolution 242 is one of the most widely affirmed resolutions on the Arab–Israeli conflict and formed the basis for later negotiations between the parties. These led to Peace Treaties between Israel and Egypt...

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