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Wednesday February 28, 2024

Pakistan ‘deeply disappointed’ after US vetoes Gaza ceasefire resolution

“We urge the UN Security Council to act now, end this inhumane war and protect the people of Gaza from an impending genocide," says FO

By Web Desk
December 09, 2023
US Ambassador Alternate Representative of the US for Special Political Affairs in the United Nations Robert A. Wood raises his hand during a United Nations Security Council meeting on Gaza, at UN headquarters in New York City on December 8, 2023. —AFP
US Ambassador Alternate Representative of the US for Special Political Affairs in the United Nations Robert A. Wood raises his hand during a United Nations Security Council meeting on Gaza, at UN headquarters in New York City on December 8, 2023. —AFP 

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan on Saturday expressed “deep disappointment” after the US vetoed a resolution at the UN Security Council calling for a ceasefire in Gaza as Israeli bombardment of the besieged territory continues.

In a statement issued today, the Foreign Office said, “Despite the invocation of Article-99 of the UN Charter by the Secretary-General and his warnings of humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza, the UNCS has failed to perform its primary responsibility to maintain international peace and security.”

"The collective punishment endured by the besieged people of Gaza is unprecedented and unacceptable,” the FO added as the world slammed Washington’s move.

Pakistan reiterated its call for an immediate and unconditional ceasefire to avert a humanitarian catastrophe and asked Israel to end its barbaric attacks and inhumane siege against Gaza.

“We urge the UN Security Council to act now, end this inhuman war and protect the people of Gaza from an impending genocide.”

The FO said that the continuation of Israel’s campaign in occupied Palestine would prolong human suffering, with massive civilian casualties and forced displacement of millions of people.

“It could also trigger a wider and more dangerous conflict. A heavy responsibility rested on all who have contributed to the prolongation of the uninterrupted bombing of the people of Gaza.”

UNSC vote

On Friday, the US vetoed the resolution that would have called for an immediate ceasefire in the intense fighting between Israel and Hamas in Gaza.

Washington wielding its veto dashes a growing clamour for an immediate ceasefire that had been led by UN Chief Antonio Guterres and Arab nations.

Guterres had convened an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council after weeks of fighting left more than 17,487 people dead in Gaza, mostly women and children, according to the latest toll from the health ministry in Gaza.

"The United Arab Emirates is deeply disappointed," said the representative of the UAE who had sponsored the resolution calling for a ceasefire.

"Regrettably... this council is unable to demand a humanitarian ceasefire."

Washington defended its veto, and attacked the resolution's sponsors, criticising them for rushing it through and leaving the call for an unconditional ceasefire unchanged.

"This resolution still contains a call for an unconditional ceasefire... it would leave Hamas in place able to repeat what it did on October 7," said US deputy UN representative Robert Wood.

As a permanent Security Council member, Washington can veto any resolution, while Britain, also a member, abstained on the vote.

Ahead of the vote, Guterres had said that "the brutality perpetrated by Hamas can never justify the collective punishment of the Palestinian people."