Israel-Gaza conflict

UN General Assembly adopts resolution condemning Israel for excessive force at Gaza border

The US and seven other countries voted against the resolution for not mentioning the Hamas militant organisation.

The United Nations General Assembly on Wednesday passed a resolution condemning Israel for excessive use of force against Palestinian civilians during recent clashes at the Gaza border, AP reported. The resolution called for an international protection mechanism for occupied Palestinian territory.

The General Assembly adopted the resolution with 120 votes in favour, eight against and 45 abstentions. The resolution condemned firing of rockets from Gaza into Israeli civilian areas, but did not mention the Hamas militant organisation.

The resolution asked UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres to report back within 60 days on proposals “on ways and means for ensuring the safety, protection and well-being of the Palestinian civilian population under Israeli occupation, including...recommendations regarding an international protection mechanism”, Reuters reported.

The United States had proposed to add a paragraph to the resolution explicitly condemning Hamas for violence at Gaza border and digging tunnels to infiltrate into Israel. “The nature of this resolution clearly demonstrates that politics is driving the day,” US Ambassador to the UN Nikki Haley told the General Assembly before the vote. “It is totally one-sided. It makes not one mention of the Hamas terrorists who routinely initiate the violence in Gaza.” However, the proposal failed to garner the required two-thirds of votes.

Algeria and Turkey proposed the resolution. The United States, Israel, Nauru, Togo, Australia, Solomon Islands, Micronesia and Marshall Islands voted against it.

“The UN’s incessant focus on Israel not only brings shame to the organisation, it also draws attention away from so many other pressing issues that demand the attention of the international community,” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said, according to The Times of Israel.

More than 120 Palestinians have been killed since they began the “Great March of Return” on March 30. Palestinian refugees have been demanding the right to return to their homes, which they were forced to flee from during the creation of Israel 70 years ago. The tensions were exacerbated by the United States’ decision to relocate its embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem.

In December, 128 countries, including India, voted in favour of the resolution calling on the United States to withdraw its decision to recognise Jerusalem as the Israeli capital.

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Following a mountaineer as he reaches the summit of Mount Everest

Accounts from Vikas Dimri’s second attempt reveal the immense fortitude and strength needed to summit the Everest.

Vikas Dimri made a huge attempt last year to climb the Mount Everest. Fate had other plans. Thwarted by unfavourable weather at the last minute, he came so close and yet not close enough to say he was at the top. But that did not deter him. Vikas is back on the Everest trail now, and this time he’s sharing his experiences at every leg of the journey.

The Everest journey began from the Lukla airport, known for its dicey landing conditions. It reminded him of the failed expedition, but he still moved on to Namche Bazaar - the staging point for Everest expeditions - with a positive mind. Vikas let the wisdom of the mountains guide him as he battled doubt and memories of the previous expedition. In his words, the Everest taught him that, “To conquer our personal Everest, we need to drop all our unnecessary baggage, be it physical or mental or even emotional”.

Vikas used a ‘descent for ascent’ approach to acclimatise. In this approach, mountaineers gain altitude during the day, but descend to catch some sleep. Acclimatising to such high altitudes is crucial as the lack of adequate oxygen can cause dizziness, nausea, headache and even muscle death. As Vikas prepared to scale the riskiest part of the climb - the unstable and continuously melting Khumbhu ice fall - he pondered over his journey so far.

His brother’s diagnosis of a heart condition in his youth was a wakeup call for the rather sedentary Vikas, and that is when he started focusing on his health more. For the first time in his life, he began to appreciate the power of nutrition and experimented with different diets and supplements for their health benefits. His quest for better health also motivated him to take up hiking, marathon running, squash and, eventually, a summit of the Everest.

Back in the Himalayas, after a string of sleepless nights, Vikas and his team ascended to Camp 2 (6,500m) as planned, and then descended to Base Camp for the basic luxuries - hot shower, hot lunch and essential supplements. Back up at Camp 2, the weather played spoiler again as a jet stream - a fast-flowing, narrow air current - moved right over the mountain. Wisdom from the mountains helped Vikas maintain perspective as they were required to descend 15km to Pheriche Valley. He accepted that “strength lies not merely in chasing the big dream, but also in...accepting that things could go wrong.”

At Camp 4 (8,000m), famously known as the death zone, Vikas caught a clear glimpse of the summit – his dream standing rather tall in front of him.

It was the 18th of May 2018 and Vikas finally reached the top. The top of his Everest…the top of Mount Everest!

Watch the video below to see actual moments from Vikas’ climb.


Vikas credits his strength to dedication, exercise and a healthy diet. He credits dietary supplements for helping him sustain himself in the inhuman conditions on Mount Everest. On heights like these where the oxygen supply drops to 1/3rd the levels on the ground, the body requires 3 times the regular blood volume to pump the requisite amount of oxygen. He, thus, doesn’t embark on an expedition without double checking his supplements and uses Livogen as an aid to maintain adequate amounts of iron in his blood.

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This article was produced by the Scroll marketing team on behalf of Livogen and not by the Scroll editorial team.