World Bulletin / News Desk
"They take hundreds of millions of dollars and even billions of dollars, and then they vote against us. Well, we’re watching those votes. Let them vote against us. We’ll save a lot. We don’t care,” Trump said at the White House. "This isn't like it used to be where they could vote against you and then you pay them hundreds of millions of dollars and nobody knows what they're doing."
Trump's UN ambassador, Nikki Haley, foreshadowed the threat a day earlier, saying on Twitter "the US will be taking names" ahead of the vote Thursday, maintaining Washington has the right to choose the location of its embassy.
Less than two weeks after Washington moved to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital and begin the process to move its embassy there from Tel Aviv -- the city where all other nations house their main diplomatic facilities in Israel -- the U.S. vetoed a UN Security Council resolution that rejected the establishment of diplomatic facilities in the contested city of Jerusalem.
All 14 other Security Council members voted in favor of the Egyptian-sponsored resolution before it was nixed by the U.S. veto. The Council episode could signal a lopsided general assembly vote should member states choose to ignore Trump's warning.
The full 193-member UN General Assembly will meet for a rare emergency special session regarding Trump's Dec. 6 decision. Unlike at the Security Council, the U.S. has no veto power in the assembly.
Jerusalem's status has long been considered a final status issue to be determined by Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations and Trump's decision is widely seen as undercutting that long-standing understanding. East Jerusalem, which Palestinians are seeking to make the capital of their state, has been under Israeli occupation since 1967.