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US vetoes UN ceasefire resolution as Gaza conflict escalates

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The conflict between Israel and Hamas in Gaza has reached a critical point, with the United States vetoing a UN Security Council resolution that called for an immediate ceasefire. While urging Israel to protect Palestinian civilians, the US decision left it diplomatically isolated on the 15-member council.

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, alarmed by the deteriorating humanitarian situation, declared that nowhere in Gaza was safe for civilians. The rejected resolution, proposed by the United Arab Emirates, received support from thirteen members, while Britain abstained.

Deputy US Ambassador Robert Wood defended the veto, stating that the resolution’s call for an “unsustainable ceasefire” would only set the stage for future conflicts. The United States, along with Israel, advocates for temporary “pauses” in the fighting, emphasizing the need for Hamas to release hostages and facilitate humanitarian aid.

Palestinian envoy Riyad Mansour warned that millions of Palestinian lives hang in the balance after the veto, while Hamas’ Ezzat El-Reshiq condemned the US decision as “inhumane.”

Israel’s UN Ambassador Gilad Erdan insisted that a ceasefire could only happen with the return of hostages and the destruction of Hamas. Meanwhile, the White House urged Israel to do more to reduce civilian casualties, acknowledging international concerns about the worsening humanitarian situation in Gaza.

The situation on the ground remains dire, with Gaza’s health ministry reporting a rising death toll of 17,487 as Israel intensifies its campaign. UN Secretary-General Guterres warned of a potential collapse of Gaza’s humanitarian system, leading to a breakdown of public order.

Amid reports of intensified fighting in both northern and southern areas, and a death toll of 350 on Thursday alone, the conflict shows no signs of abating. Hospitals are overwhelmed, food is running out, and most of Gaza’s 2.3 million people have been displaced. The international community continues to grapple with finding a resolution to the escalating crisis.

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