US uses veto power to reject Palestinian statehood push at the UN

The United States vetoed the draft resolution, which would have recommended to the 193-member U.N. General Assembly that “the State of Palestine” be admitted as a member. The resolution was endorsed by the other 12 council members, while the UK and Switzerland chose to abstain.

Robert Wood, the deputy US ambassador to the UN, underlined that the US is in favor of a two-state solution. “This vote recognizes that such status should arise from direct negotiations between the parties and does not reflect opposition to Palestinian statehood,” he said.

Mahmoud Abbas, the president of Palestine, denounced the veto as “unfair, unethical, and unjustified.” After the vote, Ambassador Riyad Mansour of Palestine to the UN promised to keep working toward membership. “The failure of this resolution will not weaken our resolve or cause us to give up. We’re going to keep trying.

The decision to join the U.N. was made in tandem with Israeli settlement growth in the West Bank, which the U.N. considers to be unlawfully occupied territory, and the ongoing confrontations between Israel and Hamas in Gaza.

Israel Katz, the Israeli Foreign Minister, praised the US veto. Israeli U.N. Ambassador Gilad Erdan said, “It’s very sad because your vote will only encourage further Palestinian rejectionism and render peace nearly unattainable,” in response to the members who had voted in favor of the resolution.