Rabat- Member countries of the United Nations Security Council have failed to agree on any action or joint statement over Israel's use of violence against Palestinian protesters in Gaza.
Rabat- Member countries of the United Nations Security Council have failed to agree on any action or joint statement over Israel’s use of violence against Palestinian protesters in Gaza.
At the request of Kuwait, the UN Security Council’s members held an emergency meeting on Friday, just a few hours after the deadly clashes in Gaza between Palestinians and Israeli troops, which claimed the lives of at least 16 people and and wounded more than 1,400.
During the talks, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres called for “an independent and transparent investigation” into one of the bloodiest clashes in Gaza since the 2014 cross-border war between Israel and Hamas, according to spokesman Farhan Haq.
Some council members, including Britain, France, and Russia, voiced their concerns over the shots fired against Palestinian protesters.
“The risk of escalation is very real. There is the possibility of a new conflict in the Gaza Strip,” the French representative said.
However, a US representative blamed what he called “bad actors who use protests as a cover to incite violence.”
The Palestinian Ambassador Riyad Mansour said he was disappointed the security council didn’t reach a consensus to condemn what he called a “heinous massacre” of peaceful demonstrators or to support his call to provide protection for Palestinian civilians.
“We expect the Security Council to shoulder its responsibility” and “defuse this volatile situation, which clearly constitutes a threat to international peace and security,” Mansour said.
The clashes erupted as thousands of Palestinian protesters marched toward Gaza’s border with Israel on Friday, March 30, to kick off a 6-week-long demonstration demanding the right of return for refugees, which left 16 people dead and more than 1,400 injured by Israeli fire, the Palestinian Health Ministry said.
For its part, the Israeli military said that thousands of Palestinians threw stones and rolled burning tires toward troops, adding that Palestinian gunmen fired toward soldiers in one incident and that militants were trying to carry out terror attacks under the cover of protests.
The Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, said in a statement that Israel was responsible for the violence and declared Saturday a national day of mourning.