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UN Security Council passes resolution demanding immediate ceasefire in Gaza during Ramadan

Posted On: 26-03-2024 | International
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The UN Security Council passed today a resolution demanding an immediate ceasefire in Gaza during the holy month of Ramadan and the urgent need to expand the flow of aid into Gaza.

The draft also reiterated its demand for lifting all barriers with Gaza for the provision of humanitarian assistance at scale, in line with international humanitarian law as well as resolutions 2712 (2023) and 2720 (2023).

The Russian verbal amendment did not pass due to a lack of votes. But in the substantive vote, there were 14 in favor, with the US abstaining. The resolution therefore has passed.

Reacting immediately after the vote, Secretary-General António Guterres said on X that the long-awaited resolution must be implemented; the Council’s failure to do so “would be unforgivable.”

Disagreement in the Council has seen several rounds of drafts quashed by one or more of its five veto-wielding permanent members (China, France, Russia, United Kingdom, United States) since the Israeli aggression began on October 7, 2023.

Since the start of the Israeli brutal aggression on the Gaza Strip, the United States has vetoed three resolutions demanding a ceasefire in Gaza.

Last Friday, Russia and China used their veto power in the Security Council to reject a US draft resolution on Gaza that did not include any direct call for a ceasefire, rather it referred to supporting ongoing international efforts to secure a ceasefire.

The occupation forces continued their aggression on the Gaza Strip by land, sea and air since October 7, which has so far resulted in the killing of 32,333 civilians, mostly children and women, and the injury of 74,694 others, in addition to thousands of missing under the rubble.

Addressing the UNSC, Algeria’s Ambassador Amar Benjama said that the draft would put an end to the Israeli massacres that have been going on for five months.

“The bloodbath has gone far too long,” he said. “Finally, the Security Council is finally responding to the calls of the international community and the Secretary-General.”

The draft conveys a clear message to the Palestinian people, he said.

“The international community, in its entirety, did not abandon you,” he said. “Adopting today’s resolution is on the beginning of meeting the aspiration of the Palestinian people…to put an end to the bloodbath without any conditions, he added.

Meanwhile, Zhang Jun, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of China to the UN, said that the current draft is unequivocal and correct in its direction, demanding an immediate ceasefire, while the previous one was evasive and ambiguous,” he said, adding that the present resolution also reflected the general expectations of the international community and enjoyed the collective support of Arab nations.

He said China had forced the US to realize it could not continue obstructing the Council.

“For the lives that have already perished, the Council resolution today comes too late,” he said, but for those still living in the Strip, the resolution represents “long-awaited hope”.

“All harm to civilians must cease immediately” and the offensive must end, he said.

French Ambassador and Permanent Representative Nicholas de Rivière welcomed the adoption of the resolution, stressing that “it was high time” that the Security Council act.

“The Security Council’s silence on Gaza was becoming deafening, it is high time now for the Council to finally contribute to finding a solution to this crisis,” he continued, noting that it is not yet over and that the 15-member body will have to remain mobilized and immediately get to work.

“It will have to, following Ramadan, which finishes in two weeks, [the Council] will have to establish a permanent ceasefire,” the ambassador added, stressing also the importance of the two-state solution.

The Republic of Korea’s Ambassador Hwang Joonkook, said it was the first ever resolution from the E-10 to be adopted on this Middle East agenda and represents a huge breakthrough.

He said that this resolution reflects the consensus of the international community, starting right now with a ceasefire.

In the meantime, United Kingdom Ambassador Barbara Woodward said that the Council must focus on an immediate humanitarian pause leading to a lasting, sustainable peace without a return to fighting.

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