Zelensky decides to abstain from a UN vote after Netanyahu’s call

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, during a phone call on Friday, called on Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to vote against the UN General Assembly resolution that calls on the International Court of Justice to issue an opinion on the Israeli occupation’s actions on the Palestinian territories, Ukrainian and Israeli officials told Axios.

Ukraine voted in favor of the resolution during an earlier UN committee vote but refused to attend the General Assembly vote on Friday “in order to give a chance to the relationship with Netanyahu,” the Ukrainian official said.

The UN General Assembly approved the resolution late Friday, with 87 countries voting in favor, 24 countries voting against, and 53 countries abstaining, according to Axios.

It states that the ICJ will draft a nonbinding opinion on the Israeli occupation of the West Bank, which could take between one to two years.

The opinion should address the “legal consequences of the Israeli occupation, settlement, and annexation, which include measures aimed at altering the demographic composition, character, and status of the Holy City of Jerusalem,” the resolution reads.

The opinion should also address the question of “how the policies and practices of Israel affect the legal status of the occupation, and what are the legal consequences that arise for all States and the United Nations from this status.”

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