(CNS News) -- The Coalition for Jewish Values (CJV), which represents 1,500-plus orthodox and traditional rabbis, sharply criticized the Biden administration for declining to vote on a U.N. resolution that grants Palestinian refugees the right to return to their homes in territory captured by Israel in the 1948 Palestine War and the 1967 Six-Day War.
Under President Trump, the U.S. had voted no on the resolution.
The Palestinian refugees and their descendants, approximately 5.7 million, are currently residing in "Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Gaza, the West Bank and east Jerusalem," according to the Jerusalem Post. The U.S. is providing $318 million to the refugees this year through the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) for Palestine Refugees in the Near East.
"It is quite disappointing that the United States abstained on a resolution calling for an end to Jewish self-determination in the Holy Land," said Rabbi Yaakov Menken, managing director of the CJV, in a statement.
"This resolution employed a blatantly antisemitic double standard, demanding ‘compensation’ for Arabs who left as advised by the genocidal Arab League, but no similar compensation from Arab states for the endemic ethnic cleansing of Jews and confiscation of their property, much less a ‘right of return’ to countries unsafe for Jews to enter," he said.
"The Administration abstained on an issue of hate and bigotry," said Rabbi Menken. "This is not moral leadership. The previous Administration took the morally correct approach, and we did not expect its position to be so rapidly abandoned.”
As explained by the Jerusalem Post, "Israel has also opposed the right of return for Palestinians to sovereign Israel, a move that it argues would destroy the country’s identity as the ethnic-national homeland for the Jewish people. It has explained that in a two-state resolution to the conflict, Palestinians would have a right of return solely to a Palestinian state, much like Jews would have a right of return solely to Israel."
The U.N. resolution, Assistance to Palestinian Refugees, passed 160-1, with nine abstentions. Israel voted no.