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China says it supports UN Security Council taking ‘meaningful’ action on Gaza war

The United States, which has repeatedly blocked calls for a truce in Gaza, will submit for a vote on Friday a draft to the Security Council on the need for “an immediate ceasefire”.

Screenshot 2024 03 23 091632CHINA: China said Friday it supported steps by the UN Security Council to end fighting in Gaza, while not saying whether Beijing, a permanent council member with veto power, would support a US draft resolution on the need for an immediate ceasefire.

“China supports the Security Council in taking further responsible and meaningful actions as soon as possible to make unremitting efforts to end the fighting in Gaza at an early date,” Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Lin Jian said.

The United States, which has repeatedly blocked calls for a truce in Gaza, will submit for a vote on Friday a draft to the Security Council on the need for “an immediate ceasefire”.

Since the start of the Israel-Hamas war on October 7, the United States has repeatedly used its UN Security Council veto to block the world body from calling for an immediate ceasefire in the Palestinian territory.

Following their last veto at the end of February, US officials have been negotiating an alternative text focusing on support for diplomatic efforts on the ground for a six-week truce in exchange for the release of hostages.

The latest version, seen by AFP, notes the necessity for “an immediate and sustained ceasefire to protect civilians on all sides, allow for the delivery of essential humanitarian assistance, and alleviate humanitarian suffering”.

It thereby supports “diplomatic efforts to secure such a ceasefire in connection with the release of all remaining hostages.”

However, the text does not explicitly use the word “call,” instead stating that a ceasefire is imperative, which Russia says is too weak.

Asked Friday whether it supported the resolution, Beijing demurred.

“The international community expects the Security Council to earnestly fulfil its responsibilities,” Lin said.

“On the Palestinian-Israeli issue, we must respect history and facts, listen to and respect the position and voice of the majority of Arab countries, realise a ceasefire and end of fighting as soon as possible,” he added.

“This is the yardstick by which we measure the Security Council’s actions and decisions,” he said.

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