Israel calls UN resolution 'preposterous'

Nikki Haley, United States Ambassador to the United Nations, speaks on the floor of the General Assembly on December 21, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

UNITED NATIONS (AP) - Israel's prime minister says he completely rejects the "preposterous" U.N. resolution declaring the U.S. recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital as "null and void." 

Benjamin Netanyahu says in a video posted to Facebook that Jerusalem "always was, always will be" Israel's capital. He also says he appreciates that "a growing number of countries refuse to participate in this theater of the absurd." 

Netanyahu is thanking President Donald Trump for his "stalwart defense of Israel." 

Trump's declaration on Dec. 6 departed from decades of U.S. policy, and international consensus, that the fate of Jerusalem should be decided through negotiations. 

Jerusalem lies at the heart of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Israel sees the city as its undivided capital. The Palestinians claim east Jerusalem, home to key Muslim, Jewish and Christian holy sites, as their capital.

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12:35 p.m.

The U.N. General Assembly has voted 128-9 with 35 abstentions to declare President Donald Trump's declaration of Jerusalem as Israel's capital "null and void." 

Thursday's vote, while a victory for the Palestinians, was significantly lower than its supporters had hoped for, with many forecasting at least 150 "yes" votes. It is noteworthy that 21 countries were absent. 

In that sense, it was a victory for the United States, with Trump's threat to cut off U.S. funding to countries that oppose his decision having an impact.