Report: In rare move, Netanyahu summons US ambassador over UN resolution vote


JERUSALEM (JTA) — Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reportedly summoned the U.S. ambassador to Israel to clarify its abstention on the U.N. Security Council resolution condemning Israel for continuing to build in West Bank settlements.

Netanyahu and Dan Shapiro reportedly were scheduled to meet Sunday evening, according to Haaretz.

It is rare for the U.S. ambassador to be summoned by Israeli government officials and even more unusual for the prime minister to meet directly with an envoy.

The Security Council resolution passed Friday afternoon by a vote of 14-0 with the U.S. abstention.

Shapiro posted on Facebook Friday right before the start of Shabbat that he was looking forward to “A magical Shabbat ahead, as our daughter is called to the Torah as a Bat Mitzvah! What joy!”

Many of the 90 comments in response railed against the U.S. vote, calling Shapiro, among other things, a “kapo” and “traitor.”

On Sunday morning, Netanyahu summoned the ambassadors of 10 states that voted in favor of the Security Council resolution – China, Russia, France, Angola, Egypt, Japan, Ukraine, Great Britain, Spain and Uruguay – who were rebuked by Foreign Ministry officials on Christmas morning for their votes.

Netanyahu, who currently holds the position of foreign minister, also ordered Israel’s ambassadors from Senegal and New Zealand, two cosponsors of the resolution with which Israel has diplomatic relations, recalled for consultation. He also ordered a halt to Israeli assistance to Senegal and threatened more sanctions.

In addition, Netanyahu canceled the visit to Israel scheduled for Tuesday of Ukraine’s prime minister, Volodymyr Groysman.

On Sunday afternoon, the Israeli media reported that Netanyahu also had decided to cancel a meeting scheduled with British Prime Minister Theresa May for next month at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

Other reports in the Israeli media, not confirmed by the Prime Minister’s Office, said that Netanyahu has ordered lawmakers not to travel to the countries that voted in favor of the resolution.

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