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UN adopts resolution calling for immediate humanitarian truce in Israel-Palestine conflict

New York, 28 October, 2023(GNP): In a significant move at the United Nations General Assembly, a resolution drafted by a coalition of 22 Arab countries calling for an immediate humanitarian truce between Israel and the Palestinian armed group Hamas has been passed with a strong majority.

The vote, held against the backdrop of escalating hostilities in the region, saw 120 member states in favor, 14 opposed, and 45 abstentions, underlining the global community’s stance on the ongoing conflict.

The resolution, while non-binding, serves as a crucial indicator of international sentiment as the Israeli-Palestinian conflict enters its third week. The conflict was reignited following an incursion by Hamas into southern Israel, resulting in significant casualties.

Jordanian Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi, speaking before the vote, emphasized that opposing the resolution effectively condones the continued violence and loss of innocent lives. However, Israel and the United States voted against the resolution, labeling the vote as “infamy.”

The United Nations Security Council had previously failed to reach an agreement over the past two weeks, as the United States and Russia exercised their veto powers to thwart proposals supported by other council members.

The adopted resolution calls for an “immediate, durable, and sustained humanitarian truce that would lead to the cessation of hostilities.” It strongly condemns any forced transfer of the Palestinian civilian population and underscores the importance of averting a further escalation of hostilities. The resolution also calls for increased humanitarian aid to Gaza, where access for aid deliveries has been severely restricted.

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Notably, a proposed Canadian amendment that aimed to condemn the Hamas attack did not secure the required two-thirds majority.

While the resolution calls for the immediate release of all hostages and condemns “all acts of terrorism and indiscriminate attacks,” it does not explicitly name Hamas.

Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations, Gilad Erdan, expressed concerns that a ceasefire would provide Hamas with an opportunity to rearm. He criticized the vote, asserting that it aimed not to promote peace but to constrain Israel.

Ambassador Erdan had earlier remarked, “The only place this resolution belongs is in the dustbin of history.” Additionally, Israel’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Eli Cohen, outrightly rejected the resolution, labeling it ‘despicable.’

Experts commenting on Israel’s rejection have expressed their disappointment, noting the irony of a country that itself originated from the UN General Assembly Resolution in 1948 now criticizing a similar UN General Assembly resolution in 2023.

The United Nations General Assembly’s resolution underscores the urgency of addressing the ongoing crisis, even as diplomatic efforts continue to seek an end to the violence between Israel and Hamas.