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Vassily Nebenzia, Permanent Representative of Russia to UN. (Photo: via UN website)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

Moscow’s envoy warned that the resolution will “ensure the impunity of Israel, whose crimes are not even assessed in the draft.”

Russia and China vetoed on Friday a US draft UN Security Council resolution which conditioned the ceasefire in Gaza to “immediate” release of all “remaining hostages” currently held in Gaza. 

United States Ambassador to the United Nations, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, said before the vote that the resolution “would help put pressure on Hamas to agree to a deal on ending the fighting and releasing hostages,” the United Nations News website reported

Russia’s Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia said that the US was trying to “sell a product” to the UNSC by using the term “imperative” without demanding a ceasefire.

“We have observed a typical hypocritical spectacle,” he said.

Nebenzia added that “there was no call for a ceasefire in the text, accusing US leadership of ‘deliberately misleading the international community’,” the report added. 

Moscow’s envoy warned that the resolution will “ensure the impunity of Israel, whose crimes are not even assessed in the draft.”

Nebenzia reportedly slammed the draft resolution as a “false ceasefire call”, adding that an alternative draft was already being circulated by other members of the Council.

For his part, China’s envoy Zhang Jun said that the Council should call for an immediate and unconditional ceasefire, adding that too much time has been wasted in this regard.

Beijing’s representative also said that China will support a new draft resolution that is already circulating and that “is clear on the issue of a ceasefire and is in line with the correct direction of the Council action and is of great relevance.”

In February, the United States vetoed a resolution put forward by Algeria demanding “an immediate humanitarian ceasefire that must be respected by all parties”. 

The move was the third US veto of a UNSC resolution calling for a ceasefire in Gaza.

Algeria’s Ambassador to the United Nations, Amar Bendjama, said on Friday before the vote that if the Council passed his country’s resolution of late February, thousands of innocent lives could have been saved. 

Gaza Genocide

Currently on trial before the International Court of Justice for genocide against Palestinians, Israel has been waging a devastating war on Gaza since October 7. 

According to Gaza’s Ministry of Health, 31,988 Palestinians have been killed, and 74,188 wounded in Israel’s ongoing genocide in Gaza starting on October 7.

Moreover, at least 7,000 people are unaccounted for, presumed dead under the rubble of their homes throughout the Strip. 

Palestinian and international organizations say that the majority of those killed and wounded are women and children.

The Israeli aggression has also resulted in the forceful displacement of nearly two million people from all over the Gaza Strip, with the vast majority of the displaced forced into the densely crowded southern city of Rafah near the border with Egypt – in what has become Palestine’s largest mass exodus since the 1948 Nakba.

Israel says that 1,200 soldiers and civilians were killed during the Al-Aqsa Flood Operation on October 7. Israeli media published reports suggesting that many Israelis were killed on that day by ‘friendly fire.’

(The Palestine Chronicle)

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