UN’s Ban Ki-moon calls for global action on Gaza

January 5th, 2009 - 8:17 pm ICT by IANS  

New York, Jan 5 (DPA) UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon Monday renewed appeals for the international community to act to halt the fighting in the Gaza Strip.His statement comes less than two days after the US blocked a UN Security Council resolution on the Mideast conflict.

Ban said the Security Council needs to play a central role in ending the conflict and that he will continue to work with its members to find a solution.

After the closed council meeting Saturday night, Jean-Maurice Ripert, French ambassador to the UN and current holder of the Security Council’s rotating chairmanship, said there was a strong consensus among the 15 member countries to issue an opinion on the conflict. The overwhelming majority would demand an immediate ceasefire from all sides, he said.

At the time, US Ambassador Alejandro Wolff said that it would damage the Security Council’s credibility to make demands that go ignored. He said that Israel as a member of the world community should not be equated with a terrorist organisation like Hamas, the Palestinian militant movement that controls the Gaza Strip.

The Security Council has been unable to forge a resolution on the violence since an Israeli bombing campaign began Dec 27, in response to stepped up rocket fire toward southern Israel by Gaza militants.

Several Arab leaders and diplomats are expected this week at UN headquarters in New York to make direct appeals for the UN to take action.

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