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Israel cuts UN payments over settlements (1)
AAP on January 7, 2017, 11:49 pm
Israel will withhold about $US6 million ($A8.2 million) in UN dues to protest the international body’s recent condemnation of Israel for building settlements in occupied Palestinian territories, its UN ambassador tweeted late on Friday.
“This amount represents the portion of the UN budget allocated to anti-Israel bodies. It is unreasonable for Israel to fund such entities,” wrote Danny Danon on his Twitter feed.
A Foreign Ministry spokesman confirmed the decision to dpa on Saturday.
“The UN must end the absurd reality in which it supports bodies whose sole intent is to spread incitement and anti-Israel propaganda,” Danon wrote.
Israel’s annual contribution to the UN budget stands at around $US40 million, according to Israeli media.
Resolution 2334, demanding a halt to Israeli settlement activity in the West Bank, was passed by the Security Council on December 23 after a surprise US decision not to veto the proposal.
The resolution calls the Israeli settlements a violation of international law and an obstacle to implementing a two-state solution.
Israel is routinely criticised for expanding existing settlements or allowing devout settlers to claim land in the West Bank, which Palestinians hope will one day be the core of their own state.
However, any moves to formally upbraid Israel at the UN had, until December, been blocked by the US and its Security Council veto.
About 600,000 Israelis live in 125 settlements across the West Bank. Additionally, there are about 100 unauthorised settlements, which Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is currently trying to legalise with a new law before the parliament.
Israel, Palestine, UN