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Israel thanks US for blocking UN statement calling for immediate ceasefire in Gaza

Published: May 17, 2021
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Source: Independent UK

Israel has thanked the US for blocking a United Nation’s Security Council statement calling for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza, and stressing the need to protect children and other civilians.

On Monday, the Biden administration rejected - for the third time - to the draft of a statement that would have called for a deescalation of violence, and expressed concern over the loss of civilian lives, and those injured in more than a week of violence.

While the US has a long history of stopping criticism of Israel in official UN statements, even regularly using its veto power to do so, there was a hope the US would sign on to a statement that called for both Israel and Hamas to act to prevent further casualties.

But for the third time in a week, the US said it would not agree to the wording, a decision that reportedly startled some of its allies.

Late on Monday evening, Israel’s defence minister, Benny Gantz, posted a tweet thanking the US for its actions.

“My sincere thanks to the US administration and in particular to @SecDef Lloyd Austin, with whom I spoke this week, for rightly preventing the unjust UN Security Council statement criticising Israel’s actions in Gaza,” he wrote.

“While Hamas, a terror organisation, targets our civilians and commits war crimes, our aims are solely to dismantle terror infrastructure and protect our people. This criticism of Israel is hypocritical and detrimental to the global fight against terror.”

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