by Ariel Kahana and Israel Hayom Staff
Israel votes in favor of two U.N. General Assembly resolutions urging Russia to withdraw forces from Crimean Peninsula and condemning Russian human rights violations there
Over the past week, Israel has voted twice at the United Nations to condemn Russia over its annexation of the Crimean Peninsula.
On Dec. 17, Israel voted in favor of a U.N. General Assembly resolution titled "The Problem of the Militarization of the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the City of Sevastopol, Ukraine, as well as Parts of the Black Sea and the Sea of Azov."
The resolution, which urged Russia to withdraw its forces from Crimea, passed 66:19, with 72 abstentions.
Israel also supported another resolution last week condemning Russian human rights violations in Crimea and labeling Russia an "occupying force" on the peninsula.
That resolution was sponsored by Ukraine and 30 other countries and passed 70:26, with 76 abstentions.
The votes in favor of a U.N. condemnation of Russia would appear to indicate a shift in Israeli policy, but the Israeli delegation said it had not changed the way it votes on resolutions having to do with Crimea.
Since Russia invaded Ukraine five years ago, Israel has maintained a neutral stance. In many instances, it refrained from voting for Western-backed condemnations of Russia's annexation of the Crimean Peninsula.
One diplomatic official told Israel Hayom that Israel voted for the condemnation last week at the request of the U.S., which attaches great importance to the Crimean issue, and because of Israel's interests in Ukraine.
Ariel Kahana and Israel Hayom Staff
Follow Middle East and Terrorism on Twitter