Israel, chosen last month to oversee global efforts to end the trade in "blood diamonds" that stokes guerrilla wars, was put on the spot Friday when Syria asked the UN General Assembly to delete any mention of that leadership role in the Kimberley Process.
Syria objected to a passing reference near the end of the six-page resolution that simply noted that nations involved in the Kimberley Process "selected Israel to chair" their efforts in 2010, going on to accuse Israel of dealing in Ivory Coast "blood diamonds" to finance arms transactions, an accusation that Israel has staunchly denied.
The General Assembly suspended its deliberations for consultations Friday morning after the US, Canada and Israel challenged the Syrian parliamentary maneuver.
However, the Syrian amendment was defeated 90-6, with 18 abstentions. Iran and North Korea joined Syria and some Arab nations in voting against Israel.