Israelis Denounce Security Council Resolution Censuring Jerusalem Measures
Menu JTA Search

Israelis Denounce Security Council Resolution Censuring Jerusalem Measures

Download PDF for this date

Official and public anger and bitterness prevailed here this weekend over the United Nations Security Council’s unanimous vote last Thursday to censure Israel “in the strongest terms” for its measures in the former Arab sector of Jerusalem designed to alter the city’s status. Political circles said the censure vote came as no surprise in light of the Council’s past anti-Israel record.

They said the only possible reaction by Israel was one voiced by the country’s chief representative to the UN, Ambassador Yosef Tekoah. He said, after the 15-0 vote, that the resolution would not affect the annexation of East Jerusalem. “Life cannot stop in Jerusalem; it will continue as it has during the last two years of Jerusalem’s rebirth,” Mr. Tekoah declared. The same sentiments were expressed today by Foreign Minister Abba Eban, Information Minister Israel Galili, Mayor Teddy Kollek of Jerusalem and Sephardic Chief Rabbi Itzhak Nissim.

Mr. Eban, who returned from a visit to three East African countries Friday, said the Security. Council’s latest action leaves it in a “weakened moral position. It is the Security Council that did not lift a finger when Israel was in mortal danger in 1967 and did not do anything to assist Israel during the war when Israel was threatened with annihilation,” Mr. Eban said. “No voices were raised when our houses and synagogues were destroyed. It is the same Security Council which took no action during the invasion of Czechoslovakia, which does not take any interest in the war in southeast Asia and does not do anything about the humanitarian disaster now taking place in West Africa.” His latter reference was to the civil war in Biafra.

Mr. Galili called the Security Council’s action “the epitome of barrenness which cannot have any influence over the facts established by Israel.” Mayor Kollek said the resolution was “detached from realities” and pledged that his administration would continue to work for a unified city. The Chief Rabbi claimed that “the city of Jerusalem was given to the Jewish people by a Force much higher than that wielded by the world’s powers.”

Israeli diplomatic circles expressed sharp criticism over what they contended was the “anti-Israel attitude” of the British representative, Lord Caradon, during the Security Council debate that led up to the censure vote. Lord Caradon was the British participant in the Four Power Middle East talks which recessed in New York last week. Israelis here accused him of having expressed pro-Arab bias on several occasions.

The resolution was approved unanimously by the Council after it was modified in private negotiations to delete punitive proposals that would have called for an arms embargo and threatened economic sanctions.

The United States abstained in a preliminary 14-0 vote on a paragraph which called upon Israel “to rescind forthwith all measures taken by it which may tend to change the status of the City of Jerusalem, and in the future to refrain from all actions likely to have such an effect.” Charles Yost, United States Ambassador, subsequently voted for the resolution as a whole.

The approved resolution was sponsored by Pakistan, Senegal and Zambia. Algeria withdrew as a cosponsor because it considered the modified resolution inadequate. The resolution said that if Israel ignored the rescinding order, the Council would “reconvene without delay to consider what further action should be taken.” The resolution asserted that all “legislative and administrative measures and actions by Israel which purport to alter the status of Jerusalem, including expropriation of land and properties thereon, are invalid and cannot change that status.”

Mr. Tekoah said Israel hoped that Jordan, which took the issue to the Council, would realize that such actions would not bring a solution to the Mideast dispute. Jordanian Ambassador Mohammed H. el-Farra proposed that the Council proceed with “further action,” saying that sanctions against Israel were “now the only remaining alternative.”

Founding Funders

The digitization of the JTA Archive would not have been possible without the generous support of the following donors:
  • The Gottesman Fund
  • Righteous Persons Foundation
  • Charles H. Revson Foundation
  • Elisa Spungen Bildner and Robert Bildner, in honor of Norma Spungen
  • George S. Blumenthal
  • Grace and Scott Offen Charitable Fund