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US Blocks UN Security Council Statement

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By Kenneth White

As a unanimous agreement was not reached, the UN Security Council was blocked by the United States from issuing a statement that condemns Israel and calls for an independent and transparent investigation into the killing of protesters on the Gaza border. The statement, drafted by Kuwait and the UN Human Rights Commission, expressed sympathy and outrage for the deaths of 58 people along with reminding all countries to comply with a decades-old resolution calling on them to not station diplomatic missions in Jerusalem.

Rupert Colville, the spokesman for the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, said “We call for independent, transparent investigations in all cases of death and injury since 30 March. Since 30 March, 112 Palestinians, including 14 children, have lost their lives at the fence and thousands have been injured. We stress, again, that lethal force may only be used as a measure of last – not first – resort, and only when there is an immediate threat to life or serious injury.” While a portion of Palestinians resorted to arming themselves with burning tires, flaming kites, stones and molotov cocktails during their protest, a larger and demonstrably peaceful group also protested. The investigation centers on disproportional use of force. Israel defended its actions saying that 40,000 Palestinians had taken part in “violent riots” along the border and that some had tried to breach security fences.

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