UN Council Rejects Qatar's anti-Israel Proposal as One-sided

Diplomats call draft 'irrelevant' for ignoring capture of Shalit, rocket attacks in condemnation of Israel.

Shlomo Shamir Reuters
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Shlomo Shamir Reuters

NEW YORK - A draft resolution circulated among Security Council members by Qatar, on behalf of the United Nation's Arab group, was rejected out of hand as "absolutely unacceptable," because it was unbalanced and one-sided regarding the events in the Gaza Strip.

Arab states asked the Security Council to demand Israel's immediate withdrawal from Gaza, but France and the United States, veto-wielding permanent members, criticized their proposed resolution as unbalanced.

Qatar's draft resolution condemned Israel's detention of dozens of Palestinian officials. However, it fails to mention the rocket attacks on Israel and the capture of Israel Defense Forces soldier Gilad Shalit.

Experts from the 15-member Security Council met behind closed doors to discuss the draft, which calls on Israel, as the occupying power, to abide by its obligations under the Geneva Convention for the protection of civilians in a time of war.

Qatar's draft resolution was not even raised for informal consultations and UN diplomats described it as "irrelevant" on Friday. "It was made clear to the ambassador of Qatar that he'd better cancel the present draft and return with a new balanced one," a Western diplomat told Haaretz.

Qatar only agreed to mention the captured Israeli soldier in the draft after the intervention of Saudi Arabia's UN delegate, the diplomat said, and did so in the clause about "efforts to exchange prisoners including the Israeli soldier."

Israel's UN Ambassador Dan Gillerman told Haaretz Saturday that after a round of talks with ambassadors of Security Council member states it appears "the international community is showing understanding of Israel's action and appreciates Israel's restraint."

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