A United Nations resolution that lead to a diplomatic freeze between New Zealand and Israel is being called a "blemish" on our international reputation, after a report by international legal experts denounced the resolution.

The resolution condemned Israeli settlements in Palestine and was co-sponsored by New Zealand and three other countries at the UN last December. It lead to Israel withdrawing its ambassador to New Zealand and barring the New Zealand ambassador in Israel.

Diplomatic relations were restored in June after then-Prime Minister Bill English wrote to Israel expressing regret over the fallout from the resolution.

A report from 24 international law experts has now said the resolution "fell short of an open, balanced, and thorough consideration of all the relevant factual and legal issues [which] resulted in legal findings that did not adequately take into account the legal, historical, political and military complexities of these territories and peoples".


The experts met at a forum at The Peace Palace at The Hague in June this year at the invitation of The Hague Initiative for International Cooperation (Thinc) and the International Conference for Truth, Justice, and Peace (ICTIP). Its report was released at the end of October.

Israel Institute of New Zealand director David Cumin said this morning the UN resolution was a "blemish" on New Zealand's reputation as an honest broker in international politics.

"This is an embarrassing look for us on the world stage."

He said the report by the legal experts "pulls no punches".

"The report makes clear that UNSC Resolution 2334 was a politicisation of United Nations processes to attack the Jewish State.

"International law experts have given their considered opinion that clearly shows how biased and improper the resolution was."

The resolution features in the Labour-New Zealand First coalition agreement, which states a commitment to "record a Cabinet minute regarding the lack of process followed prior to the National-led Government's sponsorship of UNSC2334".