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May 19, 2021 5:02 pm

French-US Tensions at UN Over Middle East Violence

avatar by i24 News

United Nations Security Council members attend a meeting on the Middle East, at the UN headquarters, in New York City, Dec. 18, 2018. Photo: Reuters / Shannon Stapleton.

i24 News – Ongoing violence between Israel and Gazan armed groups has stirred up a diplomatic stand-off at the United Nations between France and the United States.

The spat represents the first open tension between the two allies since US President Joe Biden assumed power.

France — one of the five permanent members of the UN Security Council — attempted to push a resolution calling for an end to hostilities despite guaranteed opposition from the US, Washington having already opposed similar moves in recent days.

The latest attempt at a resolution was met by the US with signals that it would again wield its veto power.

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“We are focused on intensive diplomatic efforts underway to bring an end to the violence and that we will not support actions that we believe undermine efforts to de-escalate,” a US spokesperson at the UN told AFP.

France did not suggest any date for a vote on its proposed resolution, and the draft text appeared to have not been widely circulated among the 15-member Security Council. Events which suggest the move was an attempt to increase pressure on the US — or to underline a French view that the new US administration is behaving in a unilateralist manner similar to that of the Trump presidency, AFP reported.

“It’s a bit strange considering the expectation that we all had for the Americans to return to multilateral diplomacy,” one UN ambassador told AFP on condition of anonymity.

The palpable tension between France and the United States could engender some enmity and affect other issues.

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