UNITED NATIONS: Fierce exchanges over Gaza killings

US Treasury Secretary Steve Mnuchin and US President's daughter Ivanka Trump unveil an inauguration plaque during the opening of the US embassy in Jerusalem

The embassy move, which dramatically underscored U.S. recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital, infuriated the Palestinians and was widely criticised, but on Tuesday the Security Council proved unable, once again, to reach consensus. The U.N. Security Council remains deeply divided over how to tamp down this violence.

Sanders also said "Hamas violence does not justify Israel firing on unarmed protesters" as a response to claims by the Israeli and USA governments that place blame for the dozens of protesters killed "squarely on Hamas".

"Hamas has attacked the Kerem Shalom crossing, the biggest entry point in Gaza for fuel, food, and medical supplies", said Nikki Haley, the USA ambassador to the UN.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel's actions were self-defense against the enclave's ruling Hamas group. "It all boils down to the fact of making a choice - are we going to side with the strong or side with those who are right?"

"No country in this chamber would act with more restraint than Israel has", Haley told the council.

KELEMEN: Haley seemed to be suggesting Russian Federation and China, though she didn't spell that out.

The Israeli military said Monday in a statement that some protesters "hurled firebombs and explosive devices at the security fence and Israeli troops".

The demonstration in Gaza Monday culminated a weekslong Palestinian campaign against a blockade imposed by Israel and Egypt after Hamas seized control of Gaza in 2007.

"We are saddened by deaths + injuries that occurred today + over past weeks".

The Minister also called for restraint from Israel in the hours and days ahead.

The United States had earlier blocked a Security Council statement calling for an independent investigation into the deaths. But Israel, too, has to calibrate its response.

"We will also act through the United Nations and we have given our support to the United Nations secretary general in his call for an independent investigation in to this matter".

Palestinian Authority envoy to Washington DC, Husam Zumlot, has been recalled to Ramallah to protest the transfer of the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem from Tel Aviv.

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Boyd Barrett also called for the immediate expulsion of the Israeli ambassador to Ireland, a call that was taken up by other speakers at the event and the crowd.

DANNY DANON: The excuse of the embassy is just the latest in the series of Palestinian excuses for violence against Israel.

Hoyer also defended the controversial move when the Trump administration announced it in December.

Envoys from these countries toasted to the recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel when the conflict has not been resolved and people are being killed for demanding sovereignty. "Recognizing this reality makes real peace more achievable, not less".

Israel considers the entire city its capital, while the Palestinians see east Jerusalem as the capital of their future state. "No one would", Ms Haley told the UN.

The talks opened at United Nations headquarters in NY with a moment of silence for the 60 Palestinians killed. And European diplomats on the Security Council are anxious about that, especially in the midst of what they call a sharp escalation of violence.

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