Special to WorldTribune.com
Egypt’s delegation has cast a vote at the United Nations in favor of Israel for the first time ever.
The vote last week for elections for membership in the UN Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) was followed by a wave of criticism on Arab social media.
Responding to the angry outburst, Egyptian officials insisted the vote for Israel was tallied to enable the election of several Arab states to the committee.
“Egypt’s commitment to support the candidate of the Arab countries is the main motive behind the vote in favor of the resolution,” Egyptian Foreign Ministetry Spokesperson Ahmed Abu Zeid told The Cairo Post on Oct. 31.
Israel and the Arab states were included on the same list of candidates for the committee and, according to The Cairo Post, Egypt’s request to vote individually for states on the list was denied after strong opposition from the U.S.
The list of new UNOOSA members also includes El Salvador, Sri Lanka, United Arab Emirates, Oman and Qatar.
Qatar, Tunisia, Syria, Mauritania, Morocco, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Kuwait, Iraq and Algeria, Arab countries who are all openly hostile towards Israel, abstained from the vote.
Israel and Egypt have made small steps toward cooperation recently, most notably in fighting terrorism in Gaza and the Sinai Peninsula.