Russia Criticizes US Veto on Palestine’s UN Membership Bid

In a recent UN General Assembly debate, Russia’s envoy Vassily Nebenzia criticized Washington’s stance on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, stating that it does not reflect the views of the international body.

Nebenzia expressed deep regret over the US decision to veto Palestine’s bid for full membership in the United Nations. This veto came in response to an Algerian resolution advocating for Palestine’s inclusion as a full member.

During the debate, Nebenzia emphasized that the US policy has effectively held the UN Security Council hostage regarding Middle East affairs. He noted that the remaining members of the Security Council have been influenced by US decisions over the past six months.

Regarding the ongoing conflict and Israel’s military operations in Gaza, Nebenzia stressed the importance of achieving an unconditional ceasefire. He emphasized the need for substantive discussions to facilitate a just political settlement.

Nebenzia argued that Palestine’s membership in the UN would contribute to creating conditions necessary for peace negotiations between Israelis and Palestinians. He highlighted the potential for equalizing negotiating positions through Palestine’s full membership.

In response, Washington’s deputy envoy Robert Wood defended the US veto, citing President Joe Biden’s position on sustainable peace in the region. Wood reiterated the US stance on a two-state solution with Israel’s security guaranteed.

The US justified its veto by pointing out that the Palestinian Authority has not implemented necessary reforms and that Hamas, deemed a terrorist organization, exerts influence in Gaza.

Palestine has sought full membership in the UN since 2011 but currently holds the status of a “Permanent Observer State.”

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The ongoing conflict has led to significant casualties in Gaza, with thousands of lives lost and many more injured. The situation remains complex, with international stakeholders continuing to grapple with finding a path towards lasting peace in the region.

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