Russia says US policy has taken UN Security Council hostage over Israeli-Palestinian issue

Washington doesn’t reflect the stance of the body on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, according to Russia’s envoy.

The UN Security Council is being held captive by US policy with regard to the ongoing struggle in the Middle East, according to Russia’s envoy Vassily Nebenzia. He said this during a UN General Assembly debate on Washington’s veto of Palestine’s bid to join the intergovernmental organization.
Moscow “deeply regrets” the decision made by the US authorities in mid-April to reject an Algerian resolution calling for the State of Palestine to become a full member of the United Nations, Nebenzia stressed on Wednesday. Washington’s actions “absolutely do not reflect the principled position taken by the remaining members of the UN Security Council, who over the past six months, in fact, became hostages of the US when it comes to the events in the Middle East,” he said.
Speaking about Israel’s military operation in Gaza, the ambassador stressed that “violence generates more violence, and this vicious circle can only be broken if we achieve an unconditional ceasefire and begin substantive discussions about the possibility of a just political settlement.”

For peace to be achieved between the Israelis and the Palestinians, “certain conditions must be created. We are convinced that Palestine’s membership in the UN is one of them. This would equalize the starting negotiating positions of the parties,” Nebenzia explained.
Washington’s deputy envoy to the UN, Robert Wood, defended the decision to veto Palestine’s bid for full membership, reminding that US President Joe Biden “has been clear that sustainable peace in the region can only be achieved through a two-state solution, with Israel’s security guaranteed.”
The US voted “no” on the resolution because the Palestinian Authority, which controls the West Bank, hasn’t carried out the necessary reforms and because “Hamas – a terrorist organization – is currently exerting power and influence in Gaza,” he said.
“Premature actions here in New York [where the UN headquarters is located], even with the best of intentions, will not achieve statehood for the Palestinian people,” Wood insisted.
Israel joined the UN in 1949, a year after the creation of the Jewish State. Palestine applied for full membership in 2011, but so far only has the status of a “Permanent Observer State” in the organization.

The death toll from Israel’s ongoing airstrikes and ground offensive in the Gaza Strip has already reached 34,568 people while 77,765 others have been wounded, according to the Palestinian enclave’s health ministry. The campaign was launched in response to the October 7 Hamas cross-border attack on Israel, in which at least 1,200 people were killed and 250 taken hostage.