NEW YORK (ViaNews) – Despite a threat from the U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley to pull funding to the global body, 128 nations voted to condemn the U.S. and its decision for recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
Nine countries voted against the condemnation while allies Canada, Mexico and Australia joined 35 counties who abstained from the vote.
During a cabinet meeting Wednesday before the vote, U.S. President Donald Trump lashed out at the potential condemnation and laid the foundation for the potential of the U.S. removing its funding from the United Nations.
“They take hundreds of millions of dollars and even billions of dollars, and then they vote against us,” Trump said. “We’re watching those votes. Let them vote against us, we’ll save a lot. We don’t care.
Countries joining the U.S. in voting no included Israel, Micronesia, Nauru, Togo and Tonga, Palau, the Marshall Islands, Guatemala, and Honduras. Those countries abstaining included the Czech Republic, Poland, Hungary, Croatia and South Sudan, according to CNN.
Ahead of the vote Thursday, Palestinian Minister of Foreign Affairs Riyad Al Maliki said Trump’s decision on Jerusalem has closed the United States off to the rest of the world.
“Does the United States not wonder why it stands isolated in this position,” he asked The Hill.
Despite the condemnation vote by the General Assembly, the United States appears poised to move its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in the near future. If it comes to fruition, it would be the only nation’s embassy in Jerusalem.
The vote will also continue to ignite the Israeli government to continue recognizing Jerusalem as its capital.
“No General Assembly resolution will ever drive us from Jerusalem,” said Israeli Ambassador to the U.N. Danny Danon, to CNN. “The United States simply stated a fact. They officially declared what has always been true. Jerusalem always has been and always be the capital of Israel.”
Prior to the vote, nation after nation rose to decry the U.S. decision and to make their feelings known about threats made publicly by Haley and Trump.
“The world is not for sale,” said Samuel Moncada, Venezuela’s ambassador to the U.N. “and your threats imperil global peace.”
As for any future peace talks in the region, the decision by Trump could move the United States into a position of sitting on the sidelines, rather than in the traditional role of brokering talks. In fact, as the decision to move the U.S. embassy was announced, Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas suggested the United Nations replace the U.S. as mediator in the Middle East, according to the Washington Post.
A U.S. State Department spokeswoman shrugged off the notion suggesting “the type of rhetoric that we heard has prevented peace in the past, and it’s not necessarily surprising that those types of things would be said,” according to The Post report.
But, even Russian President Vladimir Putin criticized the U.S. decision to move its embassy, suggesting it would “destabilize the region and derail the Middle East peace process,” according to the Times of Israel.
Nonetheless, the decision, coupled with Thursday’s vote by the General Assembly, may have temporarily weakened Trump’s position in terms of future peace negotiations.
In terms of future United Nations funding, Trump campaigned on the premise that the U.S. was doing more of its financial fair share, but whether the U.S. would remove any or all of its nearly $3.3 billion – including regular budgetary contributions and peacekeeping funds (according to PolitiFact — in mandatory and voluntary payments to the global body.
Here’s a look at what some nations contributed to the U.N. general budget in 2017:
Source: The United Nations.