By Qais Abu Samra
RAMALLAH, Palestine (AA) – Palestine on Saturday welcomed a United Nations vote in favor of a resolution affirming its right to sovereignty over its natural resources.
On Friday, the UN Economic and Financial Committee adopted a draft resolution on the 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.
A total of 156 countries on Friday voted in favor of the UN resolution against seven and 17 abstentions.
In a statement, Palestinian Foreign Minister Riyad al-Maliki said Israel had no sovereignty over Palestine “or any of its cities."
"Voting in favor of this resolution confirms the Palestinian people's right and sovereignty over their natural resources, including land, water and energy resources," he said.
Al-Maliki called on Israel to "stop exploiting the natural resources in the occupied Palestinian territory."
He also called on the international community to pressure Israel “to implement international resolutions” that will allow Palestinians “to benefit from their natural resources, and their right to claim compensation for the exploitation, damaging, losing, depleting, or endangering of their natural resources in any way."
The top diplomat noted that the resolution is one of many adopted annually by the UN that are in the interest of the Palestinian people.
*Writing by Ibrahim Mukhtar