The United States was thwarted in a move to have the U.N. Security Council condemn the latest round of Palestinian rocket attacks on Israel, as Kuwait exercised its veto on behalf of Arab countries as a non-permanent member, The Times of Israel reported on Wednesday.
However, U.S. Ambassador to the U.N. Nikki Haley had her say on the matter during a special session on Wednesday that had been called by the U.S
“Who among us would accept 70 rockets launched into your country?” she asked the Security Council. “We all know the answer to that. No one would.”
Responding to Kuwait’s proposal for measures to protect Palestinians in Gaza from Israel, Haley berated council members for being “disconnected” from the realities on the ground. “The people of Gaza do not need protection from an external force. The people of Gaza need protection from Hamas.”
“It is outrageous for the Security Council to fail to condemn Hamas rockets attacks against Israeli civilians,” Haley said. “You would think no one would want to side with Hamas over its rocket launches. But the statement was blocked.”
“Apparently some council members didn’t think Hamas launching rockets qualified as terrorism,” she continued, but “the United States begs to differ.”
Israel’s Ambassador Danny Danon denounced the proposal by Kuwait for protection for the Palestinians of Gaza as a “cynical” and “shameful” ploy.
The U.S.-drafted resolution had been circulated among council members prior to a special session requested by the U.S. to discuss the Gaza crisis.
In an email to the U.S. mission seen by AFP, Kuwait said: “We cannot agree to the text put forth by your delegation, especially as we are considering a draft resolution that deals with the protection of civilians in the occupied Palestinian territories and the Gaza Strip.”
The blocking move by Kuwait came after the U.S. blocked two other draft statements expressing concern about the violence in Gaza.
The Kuwait-drafted proposal calling for “the consideration of measures to guarantee the safety and protection of the Palestinian civilian population” that will be up for a vote later this week, is expected to fall to a veto by the U.S., according to the AFP.
Meanwhile, Germany on Wednesday joined in condemning the Gaza rocket attacks.
“Germany unequivocally condemns the escalation of violence. There is no justification, under any circumstances, for the continuation of the massive mortar attack on Israel from Gaza,” Berlin’s embassy in Israel said in a statement.
“Especially malicious was the firing of a large portion of the rockets at Israeli cities and communities exactly during the hours of heavy traffic when people go to work,” the statement continued. “As a result of that barrage, a kindergarten was hit, among others. We wish the wounded a speedy recovery.”
“It is Israel’s right to [preserve] its security, defend its borders and respond proportionately to attacks.”