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UN Assembly approves resolution blaming Israel for Gaza violence
14 June 2018, 02:00 | Erica Roy
Israel's use of lethal force 'could amount to war crime'
The report came ahead of an emergency UN General Assembly meeting on Wednesday to vote on a resolution condemning Israel's "excessive use of force".
The resolution would task UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres with the drafting of proposals for an "international protection mechanism" for the Palestinians in Gaza and the occupied West Bank.
"The worldwide community needs to rip up the old playbook, where Israel conducts investigations that mainly whitewash the conduct of its troops and the U.S. blocks global accountability with its Security Council Veto, and instead impose real costs for such blatant disregard for Palestinian lives".
The proposed US amendment would also condemn the diversion of resources in Gaza to building tunnels to infiltrate Israel and equipment to fire rockets and express "grave concern" at the destruction of the Kerem Shalom crossing point to Israel "by actors in Gaza". Speaking from the floor, US Ambassador Nikki Haley countered that "denying a vote on the US amendment would be the height of this body's hypocrisy".
"Any resolution focused on the protection of civilians in Gaza must recognize the destabilizing and reckless actions of Hamas, which endanger the lives and livelihoods of innocent civilians", Haley wrote in a letter sent to fellow ambassadors on the eve of the vote.
Palestinians and their supporters said most protesters were unarmed civilians and Israel used excessive force against them.
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".
Israel's ambassador accused "anti-Israel elements" of blocking condemnation of Hamas. "Therefore we need a fundamental change in the rules of the game as well as the players".
Arab and Islamic nations then chose to seek a vote on virtually the identical resolution at Wednesday's emergency meeting of the General Assembly, where there are no vetoes. The rioting and violence along the border between Israel and Palestinian-controlled Gaza involved attacking Israeli soldiers and resulted in about 120 Palestinians being killed, most of whom were members of terror groups. We need protection for our civilian population.
His motion to take "no action" on the amendment was defeated by a vote of 59-78 with 26 abstentions, allowing the US amendment to be put to a vote.
Taking the podium, Israeli Ambassador Danny Danon assailed the measure as an "attempt to take away our basic right to self-defense".
Palestinian Ambassador Riyad Mansour urged the assembly before the vote to address the escalating violence in Gaza and "the crisis" of protecting civilians.
The marchers have also pressed demands for a "right of return" for descendants of Palestinian refugees to ancestral homes in what is now Israel.
It also "deplores the firing of rockets from the Gaza Strip against Israeli civilian areas", but doesn't say who is doing the firing.
They followed the same route they took in December after the United States vetoed a Security Council resolution calling on President Donald Trump to renounce his recognition of Israel as Jerusalem's capital.
Unlike the Security Council, resolutions adopted by the assembly are non-binding and there is no veto.
Starlink: Battle for Atlas launches on October 16th
That's good news, but the bad news for some is that the game's Star Fox content will only be available on Nintendo Switch. The Starlink: Battle for Atlas release date was also revealed during the Ubisoft presentation.