Israel Summons US Envoy Over UN Vote Against Settlements

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Israel Summons US Envoy Over UN Vote Against Settlements

The Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has summoned the US ambassador over the UNSC’s rebuke of Israel.

The US Ambassador to Israel Daniel Shapiro met with Netanyahu late on Sunday after the envoy was summoned in a sign of Tel Aviv’s fury over the US abstention from a vote at the United Nations Security Council against illegal Israeli settlements.

Press TV reports:

According to reports, the meeting took place two days after Washington’s refusal to veto the UN Security Council resolution, a rare departure from America’s long-standing practice of using its veto power to shield Israel from UN condemnation.

“We can confirm Ambassador Shapiro will meet with PM Netanyahu this evening. We will have n‎o other details to offer,” a State Department spokesperson told CNN, using diplomatic parlance to downplay the crisis.

Aside from Shapiro, Netanyahu also summoned representatives of 10 of the 14 UNSC states that backed the resolution, including permanent members Russia, China, Britain and France.

According to the Israeli foreign ministry, Netanyahu was yet to meet with the 10 envoys.

The Israeli PM told his cabinet earlier in the day that US President Barack Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry were responsible for the “shameful” vote.

“From the information that we have, we have no doubt that the Obama administration initiated it, stood behind it, coordinated on the wording and demanded that it be passed,” Netanyahu told his ministers on Sunday.

Tel Aviv has made it clear that it won’t be bound by Resolution 2334, which demands an immediate end to illegal settlement activities in the occupied Palestinian territories like East Jerusalem al-Quds.

The White House has denied claims that Obama was trying to “get back” at Netanyahu by abstaining from the vote.

“Bipartisan policy of the US government for decades has been to oppose settlements. The reason we took this step is because for years, we’ve seen an acceleration in the growth of these settlements. And frankly, if these current trends continue, the two-state solution is going to be impossible,” Deputy National Security Advisor Ben Rhodes said Friday.

Following the Security Council measure, Netanyahu said he was looking forward to working with US President-elect Donald Trump, who personally intervened to keep the measure from coming up to a vote earlier.

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