US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley warns the US will be “taking names” of the countries that vote in favor of a resolution that condemns the Trump administration’s decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
“At the UN, we’re constantly asked to do more and give more – in the past we have. So, when we make a decision, at the will of the American people, about where to locate OUR embassy, we don’t expect those we’ve helped to target us,” Haley wrote on Facebook and Twitter on Tuesday evening. “On Thursday, there will be a vote at the UN criticizing our choice. And yes, the US will be taking names.”
President Donald Trump backed his ambassador’s tough talk at a Cabinet meeting in Washington on Wednesday. “We’re watching those votes,” the President said. “Let them vote against us, we’ll save a lot. We don’t care. But 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 indicated that he and Haley had agreed on her message beforehand. “Nikki, that was the right message that you and I agreed to be sent yesterday,” he said. “People that live here, our great citizens that love this country – they’re tired of this country being taken advantage of and we’re not going to be taken advantage of any longer.”
On Monday, the US exercised its veto power at the UN to sink a Security Council resolution critical of the White House’s unilateral move to recognize the city as Israel’s capital. Haley cast the veto, blocking the resolution introduced by Egypt, despite the 14 other members of the Security Council voting in favor.
“What we witnessed here today in the Security Council is an insult. It won’t be forgotten. It’s one more example of the United Nations doing more harm than good in addressing the Israeli-Palestinian conflict,” Haley said in remarks following her veto.
The Palestinians are now moving the resolution before the UN’s General Assembly, where the US cannot unilaterally avoid censure. It is scheduled for a vote on Thursday.
In addition to her admonition on social media, Haley also sent a letter to fellow nations warning them of the potential impact of their vote.
“As you consider your vote, I want you to know that the President and U.S. take this vote personally.” she wrote. “The President will be watching this vote carefully and has requested I report back on those countries who voted against us.”
President Donald Trump announced in early December that the US would recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and would move its embassy there. The controversial move upended decades of foreign policy precedent and inflamed protests across the region.
CNN’s Kevin Liptak, Oren Liebermann, Elise Labott, and Jeremy Diamond contributed to this report.