U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley has sent a letter to select fellow members in the UN General Assembly — including key U.S. allies — pressuring them not to support a resolution criticizing President Donald Trump’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
The letter was shared with a number of news outlets, including Bloomberg News and Haaretz, among others.
At the UN we're always asked to do more & give more. So, when we make a decision, at the will of the American ppl, abt where to locate OUR embassy, we don't expect those we've helped to target us. On Thurs there'll be a vote criticizing our choice. The US will be taking names. pic.twitter.com/ZsusB8Hqt4
— Nikki Haley (@nikkihaley) December 19, 2017
On her very first day at the United Nations, Haley warned that she would be “taking names” of those who did not support the efforts of the United States. Now it’s close to a year later, and she is having to make good on her vow. Earlier this week, she was forced to veto a UN Security Council resolution that attempted to convince Trump to rescind his decision; the first U.S. veto in that forum in six years. Haley’s was the sole dissenting vote.
But she warned in her follow-up remarks that although the experience wasn’t pleasant, she was hardly beaten. Commenting later on her remarks, Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said she had spoken “like a Maccabee on Hanukkah,” and thanked the president and Haley both for their courage in the face of daunting odds.
“As you know, the General Assembly is considering a resolution about President Trump’s recent decision on Jerusalem,” her letter reads. “As you consider your vote, I want you to know the President and the U.S. take this vote personally.
“Twenty-two years ago, the U.S. Congress declared that Jerusalem should be recognized as the capital of Israel, and that the U.S. embassy should be moved to Jerusalem. President Trump affirmed that declaration by officially recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. However, the President’s announcement does not effect (sic) final status negotiations in any way, including the specific boundaries of Israeli sovereignty in Jerusalem,” the letter continued.
“The President also made sure to support the status quo of Jerusalem’s holy sites, and did not advocate changes to arrangements at the Temple Mount/Haram al-Sharif.
“The U.S. announcement is an acknowledgment that peace is best advanced, not set back, when all parties are honest with each other about the basic fact that Jerusalem has been the capital of Israel since the country’s founding nearly seventy years ago. The President clearly voiced support for a two-state solution if that’s what the parties agree to and the U.S. commitment to peace.
“I know that many in the General Assembly are also committed to the cause of peace and I ask that you consider whether a GA resolution contributes to the heated rhetoric and violence.
“To be clear, we are not asking that other countries move their embassies to Jerusalem . . . but simply asking that you acknowledge the historical friendship, partnership, and support we have extended and respect our decision about our own embassy.
“The president will be watching this vote carefully and has requested I report back on those who voted against us. “Thank you for your consideration, and please do not hesitate to contact my team with any questions or concerns.
My very best,
Nikki R. Haley | Ambassador and Permanent Representative