In what many in Israel see as a poignant and touching ceremony, expressing the sadness and grief they feel about the United Nations Security Council resolution approved without a veto by the United States, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu lit a second candle at a Hanukkah observance saying there was no better place for him to be.
"In light of the U.N. resolution, I thought that there was no better place to light the second Hanukkah candle than the Western Wall," he explained on the second evening of the holiday.
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Netanyahu added with irony, "According to the U.N. resolution, the Maccabees did not liberate Jerusalem, they occupied Palestinian territory. According to the U.N. resolution, the villages that they started out from in the Modi'in area, those villages and that area were 'occupied Palestinian territory.' Of course the Palestinians arrived much later. We were in these places. We will return to these places and I ask those same countries that wish us a Happy Hanukkah how they could vote for a U.N. resolution which says that this place, in which we are now celebrating Hanukkah, is occupied territory."
That place was the Western Wall of the Temple Mount, the holiest place in Judaism today.
"The Western Wall is not occupied," he said. "The Jewish Quarter is not occupied. The other places are not occupied either. Therefore, we do not accept, nor can we accept, this resolution. We are certain of our future just as we are certain of our past. And here I would like to light Hanukkah candles on behalf of the Glory of Israel. Happy Hanukkah."