UN General Assembly rejects US resolution to condemn Hamas
Before the assembly voted on the text, the 193-member world body had narrowly voted to require a two-thirds majority for approval as sought by Arab nations, rather than the simple majority urged by the United States.
The vote to require a two-thirds majority was close, 75-72, with 26 abstentions and several countries changing their votes to “yes” at the last minute.
US Ambassador Nikki Haley told the assembly before the vote that it could make history and unconditionally speak out against Hamas, which she called “one of the most obvious and grotesque cases of terrorism in the world.”
“What the UN chooses to do today will speak volumes about each country’s seriousness when it comes to condemning anti-Semitism,” Haley said. “Because there is nothing more anti-Semitic than saying terrorism is not terrorism when it’s used against the Jewish people and the Jewish state.”
Both the United States and European Union have classified Hamas as a terrorist group.
Hamas official Sami Abu Zuhri told the Reuters news agency, “Rejecting the American drafted resolution against the resistance represents a blow to the American administration and reaffirms the legitimacy of the resistance.”
Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, whose Fatah party has been locked in a power struggle with Hamas, welcomed the resolution’s defeat saying, “The Palestinian presidency will not allow for the condemnation of the national Palestinian struggle.”