Middle East

Israel reprimands Swedish ambassador over UNESCO vote

Israel has formally reprimanded the Swedish ambassador because of his country's vote in a United Nations body that Israel says diminished Jewish ties to Jerusalem.

Israel's Foreign Ministry says Ambassador Carl Magnus Nesser was summoned Wednesday after Sweden was the only European country to vote for a UNESCO resolution criticizing Israeli excavations in east Jerusalem as a violation of international law. Israel has long complained about bias at U.N. forums, feeling outnumbered by Arab nations and their supporters.

The U.N. cultural body's resolution was approved by 22 member states, with 10 voting against and 23 abstaining.

The result marked an improvement for Israel, which has previously found itself with little international support besides the Unites States. This time, Italy, Britain, Holland, Greece and others also sided with it.