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1 Jan, 2009 03:38

No Gaza ceasefire resolution at UN

The UN Security Council has met to discuss the violence in Gaza, but failed to agree on a cease-fire resolution. Arab countries pushed for a resolution to demand an immediate cease-fire.

At the beginning of the meeting UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon accused Israel of disproportionate use of force against Palestinians and called for an immediate ceasefire.

The delegation of Arab states is calling for a resolution condemning Israel's actions in Gaza and asked that it halt all military action.

Russia's ambassador to the UN, Vitaly Churkin asked Israel to ensure all corridors are open to allow Russians and citizens from other countries to escape from Gaza.

Tensions in the Middle East remain high as crossfire over the Israel- Palestine border continues. Latest reports say Israeli aircraft have bombed three government buildings in Gaza. This brings violence in the region into its sixth consecutive day.

On Wednesday, militant rockets were fired deeper and deeper into Israel from across the border.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has threatened to suspend Middle East peace negotiations with Israel over its offensive in Gaza. In a television address, Abbas said there was no benefit in further pursuing peace talks in the same way.

Fighting in the Middle East goes on despite international calls for an immediate peace deal between Israel and Hamas. French President Nicolas Sarkozy is expected to travel to the Middle East next week to put pressure on Israel to end fighting in Gaza despite Israel's rejection of a temporary truce.

Some 390 people have been killed during the raids, while 1800 are wounded, according to Palestinian officials.