Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu reveals that in 2016, Russian President Putin was willing to take on the Obama administration and veto an anti-Israel UN bill.
By Lauren Marcus, World Israel News
In a closed door meeting several days ago, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu revealed that Russian President Vladimir Putin was willing to veto a critical anti-Israel UN bill in 2016, despite a potential negative reaction from the U.S.
The revelation comes six months after a campaign trail speech given by Netanyahu in Ma’ale Adumim, in which he said that he asked “my friend, a leader of one of the veto powers in the Security Council whom I have a very good relationship with,” to oppose a UN resolution that would hurt Israel.
Netanyahu said his friend “stopped it.”
According to sources who spoke to Israel Hayom, the political drama started in 2016, at the end of former President Barack Obama’s second term in the White House.
UN Security Council Resolution 2334, which categorized Israeli settlements in Judea and Samaria as “flagrant violations of international law” and “having no legal validity,” came before the Security Council for a vote.
While the bill was originally proposed by Egypt, the country withdrew its support after pressure from then President-elect Trump. The bill was subsequently backed by Malaysia, New Zealand, Senegal and Venezuela.
Some Israeli officials suspect that the resolution was drafted and orchestrated by the Obama administration.
Netanyahu reportedly called Putin several days before the vote, asking him to veto the resolution because Russia, as a permanent member of the UN Security Council, could unilaterally stop the process. At that time, Putin didn’t agree to intervene.
The resolution was adopted on December 23rd, 2016, when U.S. Ambassador to the UN Samantha Power abstained from voting.
Just a few weeks later, with less than a month left in the White House, Israel Hayom sources said the Obama administration was determined to pass yet another UN resolution attacking Israel.
This one allegedly would have compelled Israel to surrender significant territory and would have mandated the establishment of an adjacent Palestinian state based on 1948 borders.
Netanyahu tried his luck again with Putin, warning him that this resolution would severely hurt Israel and could undermine regional stability.
Putin reportedly told Netanyahu that he was willing to block the resolution on Israel’s behalf. Shortly thereafter, the U.S. became aware of Putin’s stance and swiftly shelved the initiative.
Netanyahu reportedly said in the closed door meeting that if Russia had vetoed the resolution on behalf of Israel at the UN Security Council, it would have been a serious blow to the credibility of the U.S. as an Israel ally and damaged America’s relationship with U.S. Jews.
Last year, a former Saudi Arabian intelligence chief blasted Obama’s Middle East policies, saying that he had “no regrets over not meeting with Barack Obama, because he took the region 20 years backwards.”