The General Assembly has adopted several resolutions criticizing Israeli actions in the occupied Palestinian territory, in particular by reiterating its call for a complete halt to all settlement activity and calling on the Government to ensure the safety of United Nations staff providing humanitarian assistance to the Palestinians.
These resolutions were among two dozen adopted yesterday, along with two draft decisions, covering a wide range of issues, including decolonization, UN information policy, the peaceful use of outer space and others, which were recommended for action by the Assembly’s Special Political and Decolonization (Fourth) Committee.
The Assembly adopted four texts on the operations of the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), by which it called upon Israel to “ensure the safety of its personnel and facilities in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem.” Those resolutions were adopted by traditionally wide margins, with well over 100 countries in favour and those opposed or abstaining generally in the single digits.
The Assembly also adopted a text on Israeli settlements by 162 votes in favour to 8 against and with 10 abstentions reaffirming that “settlements in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem, and the occupied Syrian Golan, were illegal and an obstacle to peace and economic and social development.” It also reiterated its demand for the complete cessation of all such activity.
Taking action on 10 decolonization texts - 6 of them by recorded votes - the Assembly adopted by consensus a resolution on the question of the tiny South Pacific atolls of Tokelau, and also adopted a decision on the question of Gibraltar, again without a vote. Contrary to last year, however, no consensus could be reached on a text concerning Western Sahara.
Turning to outer space, the Assembly adopted by consensus, a text on a UN Platform for Space-based Information for Disaster Management and Emergency Response, setting up a programme to provide universal access to all countries and relevant organizations to “space-based information and services to support the full disaster-management cycle.”