In 2016, Russia was willing to block former US President Barack Obama’s anti-Israel resolution in the United Nations (UN) Security Council, Israel Hayom reported.
The decision would have forced Israel to create a Palestinian state along the 1948 armistice lines.
A year and a half ago, Israeli prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu said that he asked “a friend of mine, the leader of a world power, who has veto rights in the Security Council and who I have a very good relationship with” to oppose the resolution, “and he stopped it.”
In a recent closed meeting with Israel Hayom, Netanyahu shared the details.
On November 24, 2016, two weeks after the US election, Netanyahu called up Russian President Vladimir Putin, explaining that Obama’s decision to pass Resolution 2334 would destabilize the Middle East and harm Israel, and requesting that Putin announce that he would veto the resolution, blocking it from passing.
Putin, however, rejected Netanyahu’s request, and on December 23, 2016, the Security Council passed the resolution, with the US Ambassador to the United Nations, Samantha Power, refraining from voting on it.
After Resolution 2334 passed, Obama and his staff began working on another anti-Israel resolution in the Security Council – this one tougher, and aiming to force Israel to create a Palestinian state along the 1948 armistice lines. It was outgoing Israeli Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon who sounded the alarm.
At that point, Netanyahu called Putin again, explaining that Obama’s next resolution would severely harm Israel and destabilize the region.
At that point, Putin acceded to Netanyahu’s request, and said that if the resolution was brought for a vote, Russia would block it.
According to what Netanyahu said in the meeting, Russia’s intention to torpedo the US process against Israel came to the attention of Obama, who realized that if Russia were the one to veto the resolution, it would severely harm the US’ reliability as a friend of Israel, as well as severely harm the US’ image in the eyes of the Jewish community. As a result, Obama decided to bury the resolution.