(20 July 1979)
This was the second UNSCR Resolution endorsed by the Carter administration within a four month period in 1979 which condemned Israel’s settlement building. Unlike a similar UNSC Resolution passed in March 1979, where the US abstained in voting, the Carter administration voted in favor of this resolution. Still seeking but failing to engage the PLO in accepting Israel’s right to exist, and in an effort to placate Saudi Arabia over Israel’s control over all Jerusalem, the resolution’s contents further soured the Carter-Begin relationship. It also deepened concern among American supporters of Israel, especially Jewish Americans that Carter was putting unwarranted public pressure on Israel. Twice more before leaving office, the Carter administration would endorse additional UNSCR resolutions deploring Israel’s settlement policy and control over Jerusalem. The next president to do so at the UN was Barak Obama in 2016 (UNSC 2334).
Ken Stein, December 2021
The Security Council,
Taking note of the report and recommendations of the Security Council Commission established under resolution 446 (1979) to examine the situation relating to settlements in the Arab territories occupied since 1967, including Jerusalem, contained in document S/13450,
Strongly deploring the lack of co-operation of Israel with the Commission,
Considering that the policy of Israel in establishing settlements in the occupied Arab territories has no legal validity and constitutes a violation of the Fourth Geneva Convention relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War of 12 August 1949,
Deeply concerned by the practices of the Israeli authorities in implementing that settlements policy in the occupied Arab territories, including Jerusalem, and its consequences for the local Arab and Palestinian population,
Emphasizing the need for confronting the issue of the existing settlements and the need to consider measures to safeguard the impartial protection of property seized,
Bearing in mind the specific status of Jerusalem, and reconfirming pertinent Security Council resolutions concerning Jerusalem and in particular the need to protect and preserve the unique spiritual and religious dimension of the Holy Places in that city,
Drawing attention to the grave consequences which the settlements policy is bound to have on any attempt to reach a peaceful solution in the Middle East,
1. Commends the work done by the Commission in preparing the report on the establishment of Israeli settlements in the Arab territories occupied since 1967, including Jerusalem;
2. Accepts the recommendations contained in the above-mentioned report of the Commission;
3. Calls upon the Government and people of Israel to cease, on an urgent basis, the establishment, construction and planning of settlements in the Arab territories occupied since 1967, including Jerusalem;
4. Requests the Commission, in view of the magnitude of the problem of settlements, to keep under close survey the implementation of the present resolution and to report back to the Security Council before 1 November 1979.
Adopted at the 2159th meeting by 14 votes to none, with 1 abstention (United States of America).