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Russia, China veto US-drafted resolution backing Israeli offensive

Russian Ambassador to the UN, Vassily Nebenzia, votes against a US-drafted pro-Israeli resolution at the world body's Security Council, in New York on October 25, 2023.

Russia and China have prevented the passage of a US-drafted UN Security Council (UNSC) resolution that had said Israel, which has killed more than 6,500 people as part of its underway war on Gaza, has been acting in "self-defense."

The draft was put to vote on Wednesday. The United Arab Emirates also voted no, while 10 members voted in favor and Brazil and Mozambique abstained.

Israel launched the devastating war on October 7 after the Gaza Strip-based Palestinian resistance groups staged Operation al-Aqsa Storm, a surprise attack on the occupied territories, in response to the Israeli regime’s intensified crimes against the Palestinian people. The war has killed 6,546 Palestinians, including 2,704 children, according to the Palestinian health ministry.

The Council then voted on a Russian-drafted resolution that had called for a humanitarian ceasefire and urged Tel Aviv to immediately cancel its orders on Palestinian civilians to head into southern Gaza.

Only Russia, China, the UAE, and Gabon voted in favor of the draft, while nine members abstained and the United States and Britain voted no.

A resolution needs at least nine votes and no vetoes by the US, France, Britain, Russia or China to be adopted.

Also on Wednesday, Russia's foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said the death of thousands of children in the Gaza Strip had not been enough to get the West behind a resolution demanding a ceasefire in the besieged coastal territory.

"This is the most obvious and rather simple thing to do in this situation: Simply to produce a statement, a resolution, a document with a unified call for a ceasefire, settling the situation and so on," she said in an interview with Sputnik Radio.

"Even these numbers (the fatality count among the Palestinian minors) cannot compel certain political forces in the West to come to their senses and realize what is going on," Zakharova regretted.

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