Brazil was one of the 22 countries that voted in favor of a UNESCO resolution critisizing Israel’s conduct in Gaza and Jerusalem. In a ceremony with Ambassador Paulo Cesar Meira de Vasconcellos, President Reuven Rivlin complained about the vote.
The resolution classifies Israel as an “occupying power” with no rightful claim to any part of Jerusalem. Furthermore, the document criticizes the annexation of Jerusalem in 1967. Both Israelis and Palestinians claim the city as their capital.
President asked Brazil to reconsider vote
During the meeting, Rivlin stated that there isn’t a single Brazilian who doesn’t understand “the connection that the Jewish people have with Jerusalem.” He further stated that “not even UNESCO can change that. The decision should be forgotten, should be modified. I’m asking the Brazilian government to reconsider its vote.”
The Brazilian Ambassador responded by saying that Brazil has been friends with Israel “since its creation”. He will dedicate his term in Israel to “a positive agenda between the two countries”.
Israel will further cut UN funding
Twenty-two countries voted for the resolution, including Russia, China, Brazil, Sweden, South Africa, Iran, Malaysia, Mauritius, Nigeria, Senegal, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Vietnam, Nicaragua, Chad and seven Arab countries. Ten countries voted against the resolution. Among them Germany, the United States, Italy, Great Britain, Holland, Lithuania, Greece, Paraguay, Ukraine, and Togo. Twenty-three nations abstained.
Before the vote, President Rivlin said that Israel doesn’t believe in UNESCO. “There are no other people for whom Jerusalem is as holy as for the Jewish people, even though a discussion is taking place at UNESCO today that will try to deny this simple truth,” he added.
In retaliation, Israel will cut $1 million from its United Nations funding. The middle eastern country has already cut $9 million since January, according to the Foreign Ministry.