Maldivian gov't condemns UN veto power at UNGA78

The Maldivian government has strongly criticized the veto power wielded by certain UN countries at the UN Security Council.

Delivering a statement on behalf of the Maldives at the 78th UN General Assembly, Maldives Housing Minister Dr. Ali Haidhar said the UN Security Council has failed to guarantee the rights of the Palestinian people and blocked Palestine's bid for full membership in the United Nations.

In his address, Dr. Haidhar said Israel's atrocious crimes against the Palestinian people and their deliberate and systematic efforts to exterminate the people of Palestine cannot be ignored. He asserted that the biggest obstacle to the UN's efforts to ensure the rights of the Palestinian people and an independent state status for Palestine is the veto power held by some countries in the UN Security Council. He criticized the use of veto power by a single country to oppose the collective efforts of 140 UN member states and millions advocating for Palestinian rights.

"It is shameful that one vote can ignore the deafening call for justice for Palestine. A call echoed by over 140 member states of this General Assembly, including 12 member states of the Security Council. A call echoed by millions of peaceful protesters in universities, streets, and cities across the world. Yet one country, just one out of the 193 members of the United Nations, defied that outcry for justice. A cry for recognition, and a call for self-determination. With that one vote, the United Nations Security Council has yet again failed. With that veto, the Security Council has failed to stop Israel's ongoing genocide," he said.

The minister said Israel's genocide in Palestine has always been recorded in history as witnessed in real-time. He said one cannot fake ignorance, and cannot claim to be unaware of the situation on the ground in Palestine right now. However, the UN Security Council has normalized Israel's unbearable escalation of violence and terror by its inaction, he said. He went on to state that the council's veto power is being used as a tool to perpetrate genocide and called for its abolishment.

Minister Haider strongly called on Israel to recognize and respect the sovereignty of Palestine and to withdraw from the occupied Palestinian land and allow the return of Palestinian refugees driven out of their homes since 1948.

Palestine does not yet have the status of an independent state at the UN. Palestine was granted UN observer status in 2012. Last month, the United States used its veto power in the Security Council to withdraw a proposal to the UN General Assembly to grant Palestinian independent state status.

In addition to the United States, the United Kingdom, France, China, and Russia have veto powers at the UN Security Council.