The United Nations General Assembly adopted on 21st December 2018, by an overwhelming majority, a resolution that affirms the right of the Palestinian people to sovereignty over their natural resources. The Resolution was adopted by an overwhelming majority with 159 votes in favour to 7 against (Canada, Israel, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Micronesia, Nauru, United States), with 13 abstentions. It is to be noted that those countries that voted against the Resolution are completely dominated by US imperialism.
The resolution stresses permanent sovereignty of the Palestinian people in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem, and of the Arab population in the occupied Syrian Golan over their natural resources.
By that text, the Assembly demanded that Israel “cease the exploitation, damage, cause of loss or depletion and endangerment of the natural resources in the occupied Palestinian territory, including East Jerusalem, and in the occupied Syrian Golan.” The Assembly stressed that the settlements being constructed by Israel in the occupied Palestinian territory are “contrary to international law and are seriously depriving the Palestinian people of their natural resources”. It noted that Israeli settlement activities involve the deliberate and planned settlement of Israeli nationals in the occupied territories, the confiscation of land, the forced transfer of Palestinian civilians, including Bedouin families, the exploitation of natural resources, the fragmentation of territory and other actions against the Palestinian civilian population and the civilian population in the occupied Syrian Golan that are contrary to international law.
This resolution comes in the wake of another Resolution adopted earlier the same month that affirmed “the inadmissibility of the acquisition of territory by force”. This was in reference to the Israeli settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem, and the occupied Syrian Golan. The UN Resolution noted that these have been established in breach of international law.
The fact is that the imperialists, headed by US imperialism, violate international law at will and invoke the same when it suits them to weaken their enemies. The UN is dominated by US imperialism. The question of Palestine and related issues has been the subject of numerous resolutions and decisions adopted by the Assembly’s regular, special and emergency sessions. These have had little impact on the ground, where the Israeli state, backed by the US, continues to violate the human rights of the people of Palestine. The Israeli state has refused to recognize and has never accepted its obligations and commitments in this regard. It has refused to heed the UN call for a complete cessation of all its settlement activities that are essential for salvaging the two-State solution on the basis of the pre-1967 borders.
That the resolution was passed with an overwhelming majority shows that most of the countries are taking a stand against the flagrant violation of justice by Israel, despite US threats of cutting aid to such countries. This is largely an outcome of the decades-long relentless struggle of the Palestinian people who have never up their claim for the right to their homeland. Each new generation of Palestinians has taken up this struggle against the historical injustice of Israel backed by US imperialism.
All over the world people are coming out on to the streets opposing imperialist aggression and war, and championing the rights of countries and peoples whose independence and sovereignty is being violated by the big powers. The peoples are demanding that the objectives for which the UN was founded be realized. The rampant aggression and arrogance of US imperialism poses the greatest challenge to this aspiration of the world’s peoples.