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Palestinians inspect a car hit by an Israeli strike in Deir Al Balah, in the central Gaza Strip on February 21, 2024. Image Credit: REUTERS

BEIJING: China warned Wednesday that a US decision to veto a UN Security Council resolution calling for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza pushed the conflict into an “even more dangerous” situation.

Washington on Tuesday vetoed a UN Security Council resolution drafted by Algeria, which demanded an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in war-torn Gaza and the “unconditional” release of all hostages kidnapped in the October 7 attacks.

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Linda Thomas-Greenfield, Washington’s ambassador to the UN, called the vote “wishful and irresponsible” as it could put negotiations to free hostages in Gaza “in jeopardy”.

The veto provoked criticism from countries including China, Russia, Saudi Arabia and even close US allies France and Slovenia.

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“China voted in favour of the draft resolution,” foreign ministry spokesperson Mao Ning told a regular briefing on Wednesday.

“The United States has once again single-handedly vetoed it, pushing the situation in Gaza into an even more dangerous situation, in which all parties concerned... have expressed their strong disappointment and dissatisfaction,” she added.

“The humanitarian situation in Gaza is becoming extremely serious, and regional peace and stability have been severely impacted,” Mao said.

“The Security Council must take action as quickly as possible to bring a halt to hostilities. This is a moral obligation that cannot be put off,” she said.

“We will continue to work with all parties in the international community to push the Security Council to take further responsible and meaningful actions, and make unremitting efforts to quell the war in Gaza at an early date,” Mao added.