Published: Thu, June 14, 2018
Global News | By Stacy Ballard

Haley Lambasts U.N. Opposition to Amendment Condemning Hamas

Haley Lambasts U.N. Opposition to Amendment Condemning Hamas

The UN General Assembly was set to vote on Wednesday on condemning Israel for Palestinian deaths in Gaza in a resolution opposed by the United States, which wants the world body to blame Hamas for the violence.

Israel's use of lethal force against Palestinian protestors along the Gaza strip border in recent weeks could amount to war crimes, Human Rights Watch said on Wednesday.

Arab countries backing the measure turned to the General Assembly after the United States used its veto in the Security Council to block the resolution on June 1.

Haley expressed optimism, however, about the number of countries that supported the USA amendment to condemn Hamas. But General Assembly President Miroslav Lajcak declared that under an assembly rule, a two-thirds majority was needed so the amendment failed.

Before the vote, the USA ambassador Nikki Haley said there were "no ideal actors" on either side of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

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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. Israel says Hamas uses the protests as cover for attacks on the border fence.

The draft General Assembly resolution calls for "immediate steps towards ending the closure and the restrictions imposed by Israel on movement and access into and out of the Gaza Strip".

The proposal further called "for the consideration of measures to guarantee the safety and protection of the Palestinian civilian population", pointing particularly to Gaza, where more than 127 Palestinians have been killed and thousands more wounded by Israeli forces fire during recent mass demonstrations.

More than 120 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces in Gaza border protests since March 30.

"We can not remain silent in the face of the most violent crimes and human rights violations being systematically perpetrated against our people", Mansour said.

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Turkey's Ambassador Feridun Hadi Sinirlioglu defended the resolution, saying it was "about taking sides with global law" and showing the Palestinians that the world "does care about their suffering".

Haley had argued that the amendment proposed by the U.S. It "deplores the firing of rockets from the Gaza Strip against Israeli civilian areas", but doesn't say who is doing the firing.

Arab and Islamic nations then made a decision to seek a vote on virtually the identical resolution at Wednesday's emergency meeting of the General Assembly, where there are no vetoes.

General Assembly resolutions are not legally binding but carry political weight. He said it also undermined reconciliation efforts between rival Palestinian factions Hamas and Fatah as well as the "remote prospects" of reviving peace negotiations with Israel.

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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.

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