The UN Security Council on Wednesday failed to condemn a recent airstrike in Libya because the U.S. would not support the statement's text, according to multiple reports.
The council met behind closed doors for two hours to discuss the attack, which took place Tuesday, on a migrant detention center in the Tajoura suburb of the country's capital, Tripoli, which killed at least 44 people and injured 130 others.
The emergency meeting was called by Peru, which holds the council presidency in July.
The U.K. reportedly circulated a statement that condemned the attack and called for a ceasefire and return to political talks.
But U.S. diplomats did not approve the statement, saying they would need word from Washington to be able to vote in favor of it, according to reports.
Libya’s Government of National Accord (GNA) blamed the airstrike on commander Khalifa Haftar's forces.
UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said he was outraged over the attack and called for an independent investigation.
The U.S. State Department condemned the attack but did not call for a ceasefire.
In early April, Haftar, who commands forces loyal to a rival government based in eastern Libya, launched a wide-ranging campaign to take the capital, but his forces have failed to achieve their primary objective, although they have captured several strategic towns and cities in the vicinity.
Libya has remained beset by turmoil since 2011 when a bloody NATO-backed uprising led to the ouster and death of long-serving President Muammar Gaddafi after more than four decades in power.
Since then, Libya’s stark political divisions have yielded two rival seats of power -- one in Tobruk and another in Tripoli -- and a host of heavily armed militia groups.
By Umar Farooq in Washington