US has Gaza resolution vetoed as Russia and China blast "hypocritical spectacle"

New York, New York - Russia and China on Friday vetoed a US-led draft Security Council resolution on Gaza, with Moscow accusing Washington of a "hypocritical spectacle" that does not pressure Israel.

Russia slammed a US draft resolution on Gaza at the UN Security Council as nothing more than a "hypocritical spectacle."
Russia slammed a US draft resolution on Gaza at the UN Security Council as nothing more than a "hypocritical spectacle."  © EDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZ / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP

The US, Israel's main ally which has vetoed previous ceasefire calls, put forward a resolution which highlighted "the imperative of an immediate and sustained ceasefire" and condemned the October 7 attack by Hamas.

Russia and China exercised their vetoes, Algeria also voted against and Guyana abstained. The other 11 Security Council members voted in favor, including permanent members France and Britain.

Russia's ambassador, Vasily Nebenzia, said that the United States was doing nothing to rein in Israel, mocking Washington for speaking of a ceasefire after "Gaza has been virtually wiped off the face of the Earth."

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"We have observed a typical hypocritical spectacle," he said.

"The American product is exceedingly politicized, with the sole purpose being to play to voters and throw them a bone in the form of some kind of a mention of a ceasefire in Gaza," he said.

The resolution will "ensure the impunity of Israel, whose crimes are not even assessed in the draft."

US criticized for "ambiguous" resolution language

China's UN representative Zhang Jun accused the US of avoiding "the most central issue" at hand in Israel's war on Gaza – that of a ceasefire.
China's UN representative Zhang Jun accused the US of avoiding "the most central issue" at hand in Israel's war on Gaza – that of a ceasefire.  © ANGELA WEISS / AFP

The draft had stopped short of explicitly demanding that Israel immediately end its campaign in Gaza. In the obfuscating language of Security Council resolutions, the draft "determines" the "imperative" of an "immediate and sustained" ceasefire.

The draft linked a ceasefire to ongoing talks, led by Qatar with support from the US and Egypt, to halt the war in return for Hamas releasing hostages.

China's representative, Zhang Jun, said the draft "dodged the most central issue, that of a ceasefire" through its "ambiguous" language.

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"Nor does it even provide an answer to the question of realizing a ceasefire in the short term," he said.

Netanyahu vows to attack Rafah no matter what

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he would proceed with an assault on Rafah in Gaza's south with or without US support.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he would proceed with an assault on Rafah in Gaza's south with or without US support.  © Leo Correa / POOL / AFP

French President Emmanuel Macron, speaking in Brussels immediately after the vetoes, said France would keep pushing an alternative resolution for a ceasefire.

The Security Council may later Friday consider another resolution with a more explicit call for an immediate ceasefire.

As she has done previously, US Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield insisted that would jeopardize the ongoing talks for the release of hostages.

Speaking before the vote on the US draft, Thomas-Greenfield said, "By adopting the resolution before us, we can put pressure on Hamas to accept the deal on the table."

She later called the Russian and Chinese vetoes "not just cynical" but also "petty."

Russia, China and Algeria said that the resolution should stop Israel from a threatened offensive in the Rafah, where more than one million Palestinians have sheltered.

The US has publicly opposed the operation, but Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed Friday to go into Rafah even without US support after he met Secretary of State Antony Blinken, who promoted the now-vetoed resolution on his latest regional tour.

Cover photo: Collage: ANGELA WEISS / AFP & EDUARDO MUNOZ ALVAREZ / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP

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