The United States on Tuesday again vetoed against the draft resolution in the United Nations Security Council calling for a humanitarian ceasefire in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question.

This is coming amid intense fighting, as the UN and partners say people in Gaza face starvation, disease and death as humanitarian situation nears total collapse.

The vetoed resolution by the US Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield was put forward on behalf of Arab States by Algeria demanding “an immediate humanitarian ceasefire that must be respected by all parties”.

UN in a report of the meeting at the New York, published on its website, said the latest Council meeting on the Middle East crisis spiralling outwards from the war in Gaza has ended, with another US veto and an abstention on the part of the UK, while Algeria’s resolution gained support from 13 out of the 15 members around the iconic horseshoe table.

Highlighting the key points in the meeting, the UN stated: “US uses veto power to quash Algeria’s draft resolution demanding an immediate ceasefire in Gaza and presents rival text that would condemn Hamas but also support a temporary ceasefire.

“Council members lament continued suffering in Gaza and lambast possible Israeli military operation into Rafah.

“Algeria’s ambassador says it will continue to “knock at the Council’s door” to maximize pressure on Israel and Hamas for a ceasefire which will end the bloodshed.”

Addressing the Council, Qatar described the situation in Gaza as the “worst humanitarian disaster the world has seen”.

Qatar’s Ambassador Alya Ahmed Saif Al-Thani speaking on behalf of the Gulf Cooperation Council, called on the UN to assume its responsibilities and condemn the Israeli threat of unleashing its military operation in Rafah.

More than a million displaced are sheltering there with nowhere else to run to, she said adding. “We are living the worst humanitarian disaster the world has ever seen.

“We also condemn the forced displacement of civilians and regret the suspension of the financing of UNRWA,” she said.

For its part, Qatar will continue its facilitating efforts to free all hostages, to protect civilians in Gaza and to secure a ceasefire.

“We regret the failure of Security Council to adopt the resolution submitted by Algeria,” she said.

On it’s part, the Israeli Ambassador Gilad Erdan said the Council has repeatedly met on the same flawed theme: the demand for a ceasefire.

This “silver bullet” would only achieve the survival of Hamas, he said, and be a “death sentence” for Israelis and Gazans. Hamas will continue to spill the blood of innocents. The International Court of Justice (ICJ) rightly rejected South Africa’s attempt to implement a ceasefire.

“A ceasefire is the epitome of a kick the can down the road” approach which will provide nothing but immunity for baby killers and rapists, allowing Hamas to regroup and re-arm, he said.

Recalling footage of a family taken to Gaza alive as hostages, he asked why the Council would want to leave them in the enclave. The draft resolution, if adopted, would have ensured that this family and more than 100 other people remained in captivity.

Ambassador Erdan said not once since 7 October has the Council condemned Hamas.

“Condemn Hamas as a Council; do it for the sake of the hostages,” he said.

At the same time, “the clock is ticking” with regards to Lebanon, he continued, recalling that a Hezbollah drone was downed deep inside Israel. Nearly 100,000 Israeli residents in the North have been displaced, with the help of Iran. The Houthis are relentlessly attacking ships in the Red Sea, and “terrorist aggression” across the region must stop, he argued.

Riyad H. Mansour, Ambassador and Permanent Observer of the State of Palestine, said the Algerian-led draft resolution was brought to the Council “precisely” because Israel persists with its onslaught “despite near unanimous” calls by the international community for a ceasefire.

He recalled the ICJ provisional measures ordering Israel to cease all acts of genocide, incitement of genocide and ensure humanitarian access to the Palestinian people, who are facing death, starvation and repeated forced displacement “every day” across Gaza.

“It has been nearly three weeks since I last addressed the Council following the court’s order, appealing for action to be taken to ensure the implementation of the provisional measures and ensure a ceasefire that would protect the Palestinian people and avert further ravaging of their lives by the Israeli onslaught,” he said.

“But, our appeals have, regrettably, been to no avail,” he added, noting that since that day, the toll has risen from 26,000 Palestinians killed to almost 30,000 – with more than 69,000 injured.

“This means that in just the past 20 days alone, Israel has killed nearly 4,000 more Palestinian children, women and men, in just 20 days. This is a deplorable consequence of inaction,” he stated.

Mr. Mansour said that Palestine together with an “unprecedented” number of countries approached the ICJ to “confront the Israeli impunity that has made life a living hell for Palestinian people”.

Together, they appealed for “an immediate and complete end to this illegal colonial occupation and apartheid regime, the root cause of all the ills our people are suffering, including this genocidal war”, he said, noting that the ICJ acted swiftly both on the case brought forward by South Africa and the request for an advisory opinion by the General Assembly.

He questioned when the Security Council would “finally undertake its solemn duties” and act to demand the ceasefire that the vast majority of the world wants to see.

“The veto of this draft resolution is not only regrettable … but also absolutely reckless and dangerous, again shielding Israel even after it commits the most shocking crimes while exposing millions of innocent Palestinian people to more untold horrors,” he said.

Algerian Ambassador Amar Bendjama, on it’s part said the draft calls for a ceasefire, but the Council has failed once again to rise to the calls and aspirations of the people of the world.

This failure does not absolve the Council of its mandate and the international community of its obligations, he said.

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