British Prime Minister David Cameron (L) greets Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at 10 Downing Street in London.
(photo credit: REUTERS)
Israeli diplomatic officials pointedly did not deny a report on the Jewish Chronicle website Monday that the Prime Minister’s Office called British Prime Minister David Cameron’s office Friday morning asking that he vote for an anti-Israel resolution at the UN Human Rights Council.
The reason, according to the report, was because the resolution was a watereddown version of a much tougher earlier draft.
The diluted resolution, based on the UNHRC’s investigative committee into Operation Protective Edge, passed by a 41-1 vote with five abstentions. Only the US voted against it, and all eight of the EU countries on the Council, including Britain, Germany, the Netherlands and France, voted in favor.
As The Jerusalem Post reported Sunday, Netanyahu’s angry response following passage of the resolution on Friday made no mention of the European votes. Israel preferred a watered-down resolution without any real operative significance that the EU countries would support, rather than a tougher resolution the EU countries would oppose, but which nonetheless would still pass, keeping the issue alive.
While five countries abstained – India, Paraguay, Ethiopia, Kenya and the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia – it was actually preferable to Israel that the EU countries vote for the resolution, rather than even abstain, because it was believed the Palestinians would only push forward with this resolution instead of a tougher one if they knew the Europeans were in favor.
Asked whether Israel did indeed ask Britain and other EU countries to vote for the Palestinian resolution, diplomatic officials said Israel “informed all the members of the Human Rights Council that it strongly opposed the draft of the resolution adopted, as was expressed in its official statements.
In parallel, Israel asked members of the Council to ensure that the proposed draft would not be made worse.”