UN Sec. Council to vote Monday on US Gaza ceasefire resolution

AFP , Monday 10 Jun 2024

The United Nations Security Council will vote Monday afternoon on a US-drafted resolution that backs Washington's Gaza ceasefire plan and calls on Hamas to accept it, the council presidency said.

Palestinian Ambassador to the UN, Riyadh Mansour, addresses the security council at the UN headquarters. AP


The text, seen by AFP, "welcomes" the truce and hostage release proposal announced on May 31 by President Joe Biden, and "urges both parties to fully implement its terms without delay and without condition."

Unlike earlier drafts, the resolution states that Israel has "accepted" the US ceasefire proposal.

"Council members should not let this opportunity pass by and must speak with one voice in support of this deal," Nate Evans, spokesman for the US delegation, said Sunday before the timing of the vote was set.

The United States, a staunch ally of Israel, has been widely criticized for having blocked several UN draft resolutions calling for a ceasefire in Gaza.

But Biden late last month launched a new US push for a truce and hostage release.

Under the proposal, Israel would withdraw from Gaza population centers and Hamas would free captives. The ceasefire would last an initial six weeks, with it extended as negotiators seek a permanent end to hostilities.

Since the outbreak of the barbaric Israeli war on Gaza, the UN Security Council has struggled to act.

Following two resolutions focused on humanitarian aid, the Security Council finally at the end of March demanded an "immediate ceasefire" for the duration of Ramadan, after the United States abstained from the vote.

Israel's brutal war on Gaza has killed at least 37,084 people in Gaza, mostly women and children.

Hamas officials have insisted that any ceasefire agreement must guarantee a permanent end to the war -- a demand Israel has firmly rejected, vowing to destroy Hamas and free the remaining captives.

A first phase would see an "immediate, full and complete ceasefire", the release of captives in exchange for Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails, and the "withdrawal of Israeli forces from the populated areas in Gaza."

This would also allow the "safe and effective distribution of humanitarian assistance at scale throughout the Gaza Strip to all Palestinian civilians who need it," according to the draft text seen by AFP.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken landed in Israel on Monday to promote the plan as Israeli bombardment again rocked the Palestinian territory.

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