India has voted in favour of a draft resolution in the United Nations General Assembly that expressed deep concern over Israel not withdrawing from the Syrian Golan.

The Syrian Golan is a region in southwest Syria that was occupied by Israeli forces on June 5, 1967.

The 193-member UN General Assembly voted on the draft resolution ‘The Syrian Golan’ under agenda item ‘The situation in the Middle East’ on Tuesday.

The resolution, introduced by Egypt, was adopted by a recorded vote with 91 in favour, eight against and 62 abstentions.

Apart from India, those voting in favour of the resolution included Bangladesh, Bhutan, China, Malaysia, Maldives, Nepal, Russia, South Africa, Sri Lanka and the United Arab Emirates. Australia, Canada, Israel, the United Kingdom and the United States voted against it.

The resolution said it is deeply concerned that Israel has not withdrawn from the Syrian Golan, which has been under occupation since 1967, contrary to the relevant Security Council and General Assembly resolutions.

The resolution declared that Israel failed to comply with Security Council resolution 497 (1981), which decided that ‘the Israeli decision to impose its laws, jurisdiction and administration in the occupied Syrian Golan Heights is null and void and without international legal effect’.

Tuesday’s resolution also declared the Israeli decision of December 14, 1981, null and void and said it had no validity whatsoever. It called upon Israel to rescind its decision.

The resolution also stressed the illegality of the Israeli settlement construction and other activities in the occupied Syrian Golan since 1967.

It demanded Israel’s withdrawal from all the occupied Syrian Golan to the line of June 4, 1967, in implementation of the relevant Security Council resolutions, and determined ‘that the continued occupation of the Syrian Golan and its de facto annexation constitute a stumbling block in the way of achieving a just, comprehensive and lasting peace in the region’.

The resolution expressed grave concern over the halt in the peace process on the Syrian track and expressed hope that peace talks will soon resume from the point they had reached.

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