US vetoes denouncing violence against Palestinians

US vetoes denouncing violence against Palestinians

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Nikki Haley US Ambassador to the United NationsNikki Haley US Ambassador to the United Nations

The Gaza Post|The News of Palestine-Washington

The United States has vetoed a Kuwaiti-drafted UN Security Council resolution that condemned Israel’s use of force against Palestinian civilians, underlining Washington’s differences with friends and foes alike over the Israeli-Palestinian issue.

Later, a second, US-drafted resolution that blamed Hamas for the violence and upheld Israel’s right to defend itself failed to attract any other country’s support when it was put to vote at the council.

Blasting the council majority, US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley said the two votes showed it was willing to blame Israel and unwilling to blame Hamas, the Islamist group that dominates Gaza.

“It is now completely clear that the UN is hopelessly biased against Israel,” she said in a statement.

France, Russia, China, Ivory Coast, Kazakhstan, Bolivia, Peru, Sweden, and Equatorial Guinea joined Kuwait in voting in favor of the first draft.

Britain, the Netherlands, Poland and Ethiopia abstained. Only the United States voted against.

To be adopted, a Security Council resolution needs to receive at least nine votes in favor and no vetoes by any of the permanent members – the United States, Britain, France, Russia and China.

Only the United States voted in favor of the second draft resolution, while there were three negative votes and 11 abstentions.

At least 119 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces in Gaza border protests since 30 March.

The largest number of killings occurred on 14 May, the day the United States moved its embassy in Israel to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv.

Amid international condemnation of its use of lethal force, Israel said many of the dead were militants and that the Israeli army was repelling attacks on the border fence between Israel and Gaza.

Washington has maintained Israel’s right to defend itself and refrained from joining calls for Israeli restraint.

Palestinians and their supporters said most of the protesters were unarmed civilians and Israel was using excessive force against them.

Over the years, the United States has vetoed a number of Security Council resolutions critical of Israel.

In December, it vetoed an Egyptian-drafted resolution calling on President Donald Trump’s administration to reverse its decision to recognise Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

Israeli troops have shot dead a Palestinian man who tried to ram his car into them in the occupied West Bank, the Israeli military said.

The Palestinian Health Ministry confirmed the man was killed but officials gave no further details on the incident which comes at a time of heightened tensions between Israel and the Palestinians.

“A terrorist attempted to run over IDF (Israel Defence Forces) troops located at the site with his vehicle. In response, the troops fired towards the terrorist, killing him. No IDF troops were injured,” the Israeli military said.

On Tuesday, Palestinian militants fired dozens of mortar bombs and rockets into Israel from Gaza, drawing Israeli airstrikes.

Peace talks between Israel and the Palestinians collapsed in 2014 and a bid by the US administration to restart them has so far shown no sign of progress.

The Palestinians are outraged at President Donald Trump’s decision to move the US embassy to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv.

Palestinians want to establish an independent state in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip, with East Jerusalem as its capital.

Palestinians have limited self rule in parts of the West Bank, where President Mahmoud Abbas holds sway.

Gaza is controlled by the Islamist Hamas group, which Israel and the West designate as a terrorist organisation.

Citing security concerns, Israel keeps a naval blockade on Gaza and tight control of its land crossings.

The Israeli military controls most the territory of the West Bank, where Israeli settlements have expanded over the years.


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