United Nations General Assembly Votes For Gaza Ceasefire

The U.N. General Assembly on Friday voted 120 votes in favor, 14 against and 45 abstentions in a non-binding resolution for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza.

Reporting from the U.N. News website:

The [Jordanian]resolution calls for an “immediate, durable and sustained humanitarian truce”, and demands all parties comply with international humanitarian law and “continuous, sufficient and unhindered” provision of essential supplies and services into the Gaza Strip.

It also calls for the “immediate and unconditional release” of all civilians held captive as well as demanding their safety, well-being and humane treatment in compliance with international law.  The resolution does not mention Hamas or the events of Oct.

Gilad Erdan, Ambassador of Israel to the U.N., said in response to the resolution passing that “today is a day that will go down in infamy”.

“We have all witnessed that the U.N. holds not even one ounce of legitimacy,” he said. “The U.N. is committed to ensuring further atrocity. According to the family of nations, Israel has no right to defend itself.”

There are no talks or discussions to be held with Hamas, he said, adding that Israel will not sit idly by to let them commit atrocities again. The resolution does not mention Hamas once, as if the war started on its own.

“What is going on here?” he asked, questioning whether the goal was to tie Israel’s hands. “The only way to destroy Hamas is to root them out. Why are you not holding Hamas accountable?”

“We know there is no humanitarian crisis in accordance with international humanitarian law,” he said, noting that every statistic comes from Hamas about information about Gaza.

Anyone interested in preventing violence should call on Hamas to lay down their arms, turn themselves in and return all hostages, he said.

“If this were to happen, the war would end immediately,” he said. “This is a dark day for the U.N. and mankind. Israel will defend itself and will do what must be done to eradicate Hamas’ capabilities and bring the hostages home.”

How the countries voted. U.N..org.

France: Security Council must act

France’s Ambassador Nicolas de Rivière speaking after the resolution passed, said his delegation voted in favour, as “nothing justifies the killing of civilians”.

“We have to work collectively to set up a humanitarian truce because the situation in Gaza is catastrophic,” he said, noting that France has already sent an aid vessel. “The Assembly must call for the release of hostages.”

However, the adoption of this resolution cannot replace the Security Council’s efforts nor the decisions that the organ must now adopt, he said, expressing hope that the Council can reach a decision.

“We have a duty to prevent a worsening of the situation,” he said. “The only viable solution is a two-State solution.”

Israel must be named too: Pakistan

In a powerful speech rebutting Canada’s explanation, Pakistan’s ambassador Munir Akram said that if Canada was being fair in its amendment it would agree to name Israel as well as Hamas.

Not naming either side was the best choice he said, as the Jordanian resolution does.

“Israel needs to be named too, if you are to be fair and equitable and just”, he said.

We all know who started this. It is 50 years of Israeli occupation and the killing of Palestinians with impunity, he said.

Israel can’t face the truth or face justice. The Israeli occupation is the original sin, not what happened on 7 October.

Canadian amendment failed to get enough support

The votes on the amendment were 85 for, 55 against, with 23 abstentions, so it failed to get the required two-thirds majority.

Canada’s Ambassador Bob Rae said the Assembly was meeting to show Israelis and Palestinians that any life lost is a tragedy. Yet, the critical reason for being here has been forgotten. On 7 October, Hamas wreaked terror on Israel. Since then, more that 7,000 Palestinians have been killed.

“We can see the need for a rapid response,” he said.

Unfortunately, Canada cannot support the current text, he said, adding that the Assembly cannot act without recognizing the 7 October terrorist attacks and the hostage taking.

If the proposed amendment is not adopted, the Assembly will not have recognized one of the world’s worst terrorist attacks and “we will all have to live with that failure as the tragedy continues to unfold,” he said.

If the proposed amendment is not adopted, the Assembly will not have recognized one of the world’s worst terrorist attacks and “we will all have to live with that failure as the tragedy continues to unfold,” he said.

This amendment “names what has to be named”, he said. Emphasizing that the crisis must not spread through the region, he reiterated that Canada supports the two-State solution and continues to provide humanitarian aid for Gaza.

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