PoliticsPalestinian-Israeli conflict: US abstains from voting on new UN resolution

Palestinian-Israeli conflict: US abstains from voting on new UN resolution

The United Nations Security Council passed a resolution demanding an immediate ceasefire in Gaza for the first time since the conflict began, and the United States decided to abstain from the vote.

The resolution backed by 14 nations calls for an immediate ceasefire during the month of Ramadan and the release of all hostages captured by Hamas.

The decision to abstain from the vote marks a major shift in US policy, as the country had previously vetoed three similar resolutions ordering a ceasefire in Gaza as a permanent member of the Security Council, including at times when the death toll reached tens of thousands.

As a result, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu canceled his delegates’ planned visit to Washington DC in protest, accusing the United States of “backtracking” on what he said had been a “moral decision.”

This situation occurs after months of pressure on the Biden Government, both from its own party and its international allies, to urge Israel to limit the offensive in Gaza, since the number of fatalities exceeds 32,000 in the territory. and more than 1,000,000 people are on the verge of famine.

The move is expected to further increase tensions between the United States and Israel, which have publicly clashed over Israeli plans to invade the Gazan city of Rafah, where more than a million Palestinians displaced from other areas of the Strip are taking refuge. .

However, in response to US opposition last week, Netanyahu noted that the operation would be carried out with or without US backing.

“I hope to have the support of the United States, but if necessary, we will do it alone,” declared the president after a meeting with the US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken.

The United States has rejected the last three UN Security Council resolutions calling for an immediate ceasefire, including one last month backed by Arab states, and was the only one of the Council’s 15 members to issue its veto. In total, the country has already vetoed 89 resolutions since 1945 and more than half were measures that harmed Israel.

However, after the vote, White House National Security Council spokesman John Kirby told the press the following: “This vote does not represent a change in our policy.”

He also added: “We have been clear. We have supported a ceasefire as part of a hostage negotiation. “We are looking to get to a point where we can pass the resolution.” Furthermore, he declared that they could not approve it either, since it did not include “fundamental provisions” such as the condemnation of Hamas.

Kirby’s remarks come just days after the Security Council failed to pass a resolution put forward by the United States that called for an “immediate and sustained ceasefire,” but which was not a legally binding request.

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