UNITED NATIONS, November 16 (Itar-Tass) — The Non-Aligned Movement (NAM) on Thursday called on the UN Security Council to urgently respond to the situation in the Gaza Strip where the Israeli military launched a large-scale operation against the Hamas militants. A statement of the Coordinating Bureau of NAM received by Itar-Tass emphasises that as a result of “the use of excessive force by Israel,” the situation is considerably aggravating also in the other occupied Palestinian territories, including East Jerusalem.
“The NAM Coordinating Bureau condemns the military campaign against the Palestinian people, and believes that this is an act of aggression by the Israelis. Their decision to resort to force against unarmed civilians requires the urgent attention of the entire international community and decisive action by the UN Security Council, which has the primary responsibility for maintaining international peace and security,” the communiqu· emphasises.
The Israeli Air Force and Navy on Thursday continued attacks on the Gaza Strip in Operation Pillar of Cloud, which is a response to rocket firings made by Hamas militants during six days. According to information received by the UN, the confrontation has resulted in the killing of 18 people, including three Israelis.
The escalation of tensions in the Gaza was discussed on Wednesday at a meeting of the UN Security Council. The two-hour meeting, according to the Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the United Nations Vitaly Churkin, was useful. After the meeting the Ambassadors of Israel and the Palestinian National Authority to the United Nations, Ron Prosor and Riyad Mansour, spoke to reporters. Each of them asked the UN Security Council to respond to the aggression against his people.
The upsurge of violence in the region came at a time when the UN is readying to consider the question of granting Palestine the observer status at the world body. In the event of success, the Palestinians will be able to appeal in the international arena to the fact that they live in a state that is occupied by Israel. This essentially means that Palestine will be able to turn to the International Court, demanding through it the liberation of its territories. In 2011, the Palestinian National Authority applied for recognition of Palestine as a full-fledged member of the UN. The document was supported by the majority of the 193 UN member states in the General Assembly, but has not been approved by the UN Security Council. The voting in the UN Security Council, which has the final say on such matters, was blocked by the United States.
In the view of Vitaly Churkin, the crisis in Gaza will not harm the Palestinians’ self-determination aspiration and obtaining the state status in the UN system. “I think this will not harm (the Palestinians’ aspiration). Even on the contrary,” he told Russian journalists earlier. The UN ambassadors of several Arab countries have expressed the same conviction.
The Non-Aligned Movement, founded in September 1961, currently brings together 120 states that adhere to the principle of non-participation in military blocs, especially NATO.