Palestinians accuse USA of 'blocking' United Nations statement on Gaza

US, Russia Returning To Cold War-Like Tensions: United Nations

The statement was delivered during the emergency session of the UN Security Council, convened despite fierce opposition and requests submitted by the United States and Israel to postpone the meeting until after the Jewish holiday of Passover.

Danon claimed Kuwait intentionally called for the session as Israel's UN Mission was observing Passover, thus barring their participation while they observed a religious holiday.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas' spokesperson Nabil Abu Rudeineh said Saturday that the objections of the United States at the UN Security Council have led to thwarting the issuance of a resolution denouncing the Israeli aggression on the Palestinian people and the killing of 16 Palestinians.

Israel's targeting of Palestinians in the besieged enclave comes as a reaction to peaceful Land Day protests which took place along the Israel-Gaza border.

Abbas held Israel totally responsible for the incident and declared Saturday as a national mourning day.

An estimated 50,000 Palestinians were participating in the Great March of Return organized to coincide with Land Day and which is supposed to continue through May 15, the Nakba (catastrophe) Day when Israeli snipers deployed on the borders shot and killed 15 participants and wounded hundreds others.

Friday was the deadliest day for four years in the conflict between Israel and the Palestinians and there are fears the situation may deteriorate in the coming days.

Early on Saturday, the Security Council held an emergency meeting over the Tel Aviv regime's massacre of over a dozen Palestinians during an anti-occupation mass rally in Gaza, but failed to reach an agreement on a final statement over USA impediment.

The Palestinian side accused Israel of using disproportionate force.

"Some of the casualties were reportedly the result of live ammunition used by Israeli security forces during the March".

Nabil Abu Rudeineh, spokesman for PA President Mahmoud Abbas, accused the United States administration of "providing a cover for Israel to continue its aggression against the Palestinian people".

"However, there are also reports that some protestors engaged in stone-throwing and violent behavior; some reportedly carrying weapons", he added.

He reportedly told the Security Council that Israeli security forces said that militants tried to get through the fence in attempt to plant explosives.

Israeli Ambassador Danny Danon said "the global community must not be deceived" by what he termed "a well-organized and violent terror-gathering" under the banner of a peaceful march. It said it had "enforced a closed military zone" in the area around Gaza.

Israeli tank fire and an air strike also targeted three Hamas sites in the Gaza Strip after what the military said was an attempted shooting attack against soldiers along the border that caused no injuries.

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