Netanyahu hails UN Hamas vote despite defeat

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu thanked “American administration and US ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley for the initiative.” (Reuters)
Updated 07 December 2018
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Netanyahu hails UN Hamas vote despite defeat

  • “This is the first time that a majority of countries have voted against Hamas and I commend each of the 87 countries that took a principled stand”
  • Hamas praised the outcome of the vote, describing it as a “slap” to President Donald Trump’s administration

JERUSALEM: Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Friday hailed majority backing in the UN General Assembly for condemning militant group Hamas even though a draft resolution failed to win enough votes to pass.
The US draft won 87 votes in the General Assembly on Thursday compared to 58 against but fell short of a required two-thirds majority.
Thirty-two countries abstained.
“The draft condemnation of Hamas in the UN General Assembly received a sweeping majority by countries that stood against Hamas,” Netanyahu said in an English-language statement.
“This is the first time that a majority of countries have voted against Hamas and I commend each of the 87 countries that took a principled stand.”
“I thank the American administration and US ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley for the initiative.”
Haley, who steps down from her post at the end of the year, has repeatedly accused the United Nations of having an anti-Israel bias.
She has defended Israel in its latest confrontation with Hamas, the Islamist group which has ruled the Gaza Strip since 2007 and has fought three wars with Israel since then.
The United States had won crucial backing from the European Union, with all 28 countries supporting the draft that would have condemned Hamas for firing rockets into Israel and demanded an end to the violence.
The European Union, like the United States, blacklists Hamas as a terrorist organization.
It was the first draft resolution condemning Hamas to be presented to the 193-nation assembly, which has been meeting since 1946.
Hamas praised the outcome of the vote, describing it as a “slap” to President Donald Trump’s administration.
“The failure of the American venture at the United Nations represents a slap to the US administration and confirmation of the legitimacy of the resistance,” Hamas spokesman Sami Abu Zahri tweeted, referring to militant groups that oppose Israel.


UN's Guterres: Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince contributed to reaching Yemen agreement

Updated 42 min 26 sec ago
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UN's Guterres: Saudi Arabia’s Crown Prince contributed to reaching Yemen agreement

  • UN Secretary General said crown prince had been “very important to the outcome of the consultations”
  • The secretary-general thanked those inside and outside the region that tried to encourage progress

LONDON: Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman and the Yemeni President Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi contributed to reaching agreements in Yemen and helped achieve the ceasfire in Hodeidah, the UN's Antonio Gutteres said on Thursday.

UN deputy spokesman Farhan Haq told reporters at the organization's headquarters in New York Thursday that Guterres felt the crown prince’s contribution had been “very important to the outcome of the consultations” and that Hadi “played a positive role.”

The secretary-general thanked those inside and outside the region that tried to encourage the parties to make progress at the talks in Sweden and believes this was “valuable” in reaching Thursday’s agreement, Haq said.

Hodeidah is a key port in Yemen for those trying to import desperately needed food and supplies into the country.