KNESSET SPEAKER Yuli Edelstein addresses the Bundestag’s Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee.
(photo credit: BOAZ ARAD)
Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein told his French counterpart, French Senate President Gérard Larcher, that Israel was disappointed by the French stance on UN Security Council Resolution 2334.
“The French vote was received in Israel with great disappointment and anger,” he said in the Knesset on Wednesday. “That is mainly because of the fact that Israel and the Knesset stood side by side with France against the ongoing wave of brutal Islamic terrorism in the past two years.”
“The resolution does not help achieve peace in the region,” Edelstein said. “As a friendly state, we expect France to act differently in the future.”
Larcher stressed that cooperation between the parliaments is necessary in the diplomatic field.
“We should build a discussion platform between the houses to avoid misunderstanding and to create a collaboration mechanism,” he said.
“I can understand the Israeli feeling regarding the UNSC resolution,” Larcher said. “The surprise came from the US direction.”
In a plenum discussion about the resolution, Jerusalem Affairs Minister Ze’ev Elkin (Likud) blamed the US State Department for allowing it to pass.
“The prime minister warned the cabinet in closed meetings that such a resolution was coming,” he said. “After revealing that a meeting between [US Secretary of State] John Kerry and [Palestinian chief negotiator] Saeb Erekat had taken place, it is beyond any doubt that the Americans were involved in planning the resolution.”
“I also find Kerry’s Hanukka wishes to the Jewish people very surprising,” he added. “How can one talk about the miracle that occurred for the Jews in the Temple and at the same time back a resolution that sees the Temple Mount as occupied territory?” Elkin said US Vice President Joe Biden had called Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko to convince his ambassador to vote in favor of the resolution. The White House has denied the charge.
MK Merav Ben-Ari (Kulanu) said in the discussion that the resolution is harmful toward the Palestinians as well.
“Although it is mostly declarative, the resolution has a great impact.
It encourages sanctions on Israel,” she said.
“Not only settlers are affected by these sanctions,” Ben-Ari said.
“Boycotting the industry in Judea and Samaria causes massive layoffs of employees, most of whom are Palestinians.”
MK Nachman Shai (Zionist Union) claimed that the resolution needs to be a wake-up call for the country.
“Israel needs a big shake-up to save it from itself,” he said. “The Security Council passed the resolution after it warned Israel for many years, time after time. The US had given us credit for a long time, but now it’s over. It shows how isolated Israel is.”
“I hope that the resolution will be perceived in Israel not as a black flag but, rather, as a huge red flag in the face of Israeli society,” Shai said.