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Russia, China veto US request | Credits: Google Images
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Russia, China veto US request for UN involvement in Israel-Hamas conflict

Washington, United States: On Wednesday, Russia and China vetoed a request from the United States at the United Nations Security Council. Reportedly, the request was made to involve the UN in the Israel and Hamas conflict.

According to the reports, the idea was to ceasefire so that humanitarian aid could reach people who need it, to protect civilians and to stop weaponizing Hamas and other groups in the Gaza Strip.

The United States first brought up this idea on Saturday when there were a lot of concerns about the humanitarian crisis in Gaza and the number of civilians bearing the pain and suffering. But a few days earlier, the United States had said “no” to a similar idea from Brazil and said it needed more time to talk about it.

Flags of China and Russia | Credits: Stock Images (Adobe)

While sharing views in this regard, the US was straightforward and direct. It said that Israel has the right to protect itself and that Iran should stop sending weapons to these militant groups. However, a ceasefire was not mentioned for the supply of aid.

The US Ambassador to the United Nations – Linda Thomas-Greenfield, was quoted saying, “We did listen to all of you,” adding, “Though today’s vote was a setback, we must not be deterred.”

She furthermore expressed disappointment after the double veto from the 15-member council.

Several reports suggest that the United States did something unusual by asking the Security Council for help. Normally, the US protects its ally, Israel, at the United Nations. Out of the countries that voted, ten said “yes” to the US request. The United Arab Emirates said “no,” and Brazil and Mozambique neither said “yes” nor “no” – they decided to stay out of it.

After voting, the Chinese Ambassador to the UN, Zhang Jun, said, “The draft does not reflect the world’s strongest calls for a ceasefire, an end to the fighting, and it does not help resolve the issue,” as per the reports by Reuters.

Jun was further quoted saying, “At this moment, ceasefire is not just a diplomatic term. It means the life and death of many civilians.”

UN Secretary General’s appeal for a ceasefire

Through this platform, Antonio Guterres, the UN Secretary-General, highlighted that there is an urgent need for a humanitarian ceasefire.

Antonio Guterres, the UN Secretary-General | Credits: UN

UN’s appeal for ceasefire

After the Security Council couldn’t agree on a plan, all the countries in the United Nations (193 of them) will vote on Friday about a proposal from Arab countries to stop the fighting. Unlike the Security Council, no one can veto this in the General Assembly. The decisions made there are not laws, but they still matter in politics.

All this debate started after Israeli authorities vowed to destroy Hamas, a militant group that rules Gaza, who attacked the nation on October 7. The attack has killed around 1,400 Israeli population, according to the data shared by the authorities. Gaza has announced that it has been planning for a ground invasion and imposed a siege on the enclave with 2.3 million people.

On the other hand, Palestinian authorities have outlined that the Israeli Defense Force has killed more than 6,500 people.

Russia on US’ draft resolution

Russia’s UN Ambassador, Vassily Nebenzia, accused the US of suggesting a resolution at the Security Council that could be seen as giving permission for Israel to send troops into Gaza while many Palestinian children are at risk.

After the two vetoes, the Security Council looked at another proposal from Russia. This one asked for a temporary stop to the fighting and for Israel to cancel its order for people in Gaza to move south before a ground attack.

The support received by Russia was not enough, as it gathered only four (4) votes. It is to be highlighted that a resolution is passed if it secures nine votes and no vetoes by the United States, France, Britain, Russia and China.

It is to be reported that this is the second attempt by Russia at a resolution. Accordingly, only five council members voted in favor of the Russian text earlier on October 16.

The ten countries chosen to be on the Security Council will start working on a new proposal, as mentioned by Malta’s UN Ambassador Vanessa Frazier.

She was quoted saying, “This crisis is also gripped by a growing risk of a regional spillover. This demands our undivided attention. We have the duty and the obligation to act.”

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