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Russia, China block US resolution linking Gaza ceasefire to hostage release

01:51 AM Mar 23, 2024 IST | IANS
russia  china block us resolution linking gaza ceasefire to hostage release
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New Delhi, Mar 22: At the United Nations Security Council, both Russia and China exercised their veto power to block a resolution proposed by the United States.

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The resolution sought to secure an immediate ceasefire in Gaza, contingent upon the release of hostages held by an unspecified entity.

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This marks a departure from past dynamics, as it's the first time the US has backed calls for an immediate ceasefire in the region, having previously opposed such initiatives within the UN framework.

Despite garnering 11 votes in Favour, the resolution ultimately failed, with three members voting against it, including Russia, China, and Algeria, while Guyana abstained.

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Before the vote, Russia's ambassador to the Security Council, Vasily Nebenzia, publicly voiced Moscow's opposition to the US draft resolution.

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He criticized the US for its perceived inaction in reining in Israel's actions in Gaza and derided Washington's sudden push for a ceasefire following extensive devastation in the region.

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Nebenzia argued that the proposed resolution would have effectively shielded Israel from accountability for its actions.

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Meanwhile, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken's visit to Israel coincided with growing criticism of Israel's military campaign in Gaza. Blinken engaged in discussions with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu regarding post-war strategies to govern and secure Gaza amidst escalating tensions.

Expressing disappointment over the veto, the UK's representative to the Security Council, Dame Barbara Woodward emphasized the need for an immediate and sustained ceasefire. She reiterated the UK's commitment to facilitating humanitarian aid delivery to Gaza while stressing the urgency of halting hostilities to address the dire food security situation in the enclave.

Recent assessments by UN-backed agencies have highlighted the severity of the humanitarian crisis in Gaza, with over a million people facing catastrophic hunger and starvation.

Additionally, Gaza's Ministry reports a death toll exceeding 31,900 since the onset of Israel's retaliatory offensive, underscoring the urgency of international efforts to address the escalating violence and humanitarian needs in the region.

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