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United Nations condemns excessive Israeli force against Palestinians

14 June 2018, 02:02 | Taylor George

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"We need protection of our civilian population", Palestinian UN envoy Riyad Mansour told the General Assembly before the vote, adding that the resolution was "intended to contribute to a de-escalation of the volatile situation".

The resolution deplores "any excessive use of force" by Israeli forces, particularly in Gaza, and demands that Israel "refrain from such actions".

Palestine's United Nations ambassador had called for the emergency meeting where he urged the General Assembly to adopt a resolution to address escalating violence in Gaza and "the crisis" of protecting civilians following the killing of more than 120 Palestinians by Israeli forces.

Haley's comments came as the USA blocked a Security Council resolution calling for a probe into the violence.

"Nothing in our amendment is controversial; it would condemn Hamas for launching rockets, diverting resources to build military infrastructure, and obstructing humanitarian aid", Haley said. A bid by the United States to present an amendment condemning Hamas failed to garner the two-third majority needed for adoption.

U.S. Ambassador Nikki Haley appealed, citing another rule that says only a majority vote was required.

She insisted the 62-58 vote on the amendment showed the world was increasingly in agreement that Hamas, and not Israel, was really to blame for the violence, even though the criticism of Israel passed overwhelmingly.

Palestinians and their supporters said most protesters were unarmed civilians and Israel used excessive force against them.

Haley said in a statement afterward that "in the face of Hamas terrorists routinely inciting violence. today the United Nations made the morally bankrupt judgment that the recent Gaza violence is all Israel's fault".

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He warned ambassadors that by supporting the resolution "you are empowering Hamas".

#UNGA adopts resolution on Protection of the Palestinian civilian population with vote of 120 countries in favour; 8 against; and 45 abstentions.

The primary resolution was introduced by representatives in Turkey, on behalf of the Islamic Cooperation, and Algeria, on behalf of the Arab League.

The United Nations has passed a resolution calling for global protection for civilians living in the occupied Palestinian territories.

"Israel's use of lethal force when there was no imminent threat to life has taken a heavy toll in life and limb", said Sarah Leah Whitson, Middle East director at Human Rights Watch.

It also "deplores the firing of rockets from the Gaza Strip against Israeli civilian areas", but doesn't say who is doing the firing.

The General Assembly last held a similarly contentious vote on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in December, when it rejected President Donald Trump's decision to recognize Jerusalem as Israel's capital and move the U.S. embassy there.

In December 128 countries defied President Donald Trump and voted in favor of a U.N. General Assembly resolution calling for the United States to drop its recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital.

A USA official also told Axios that the Trump administration wants to launch a peace plan when the circumstances are "right", and that Kushner and Greenblatt are interested in input from the parties involved.



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