In an attempt to avert a U.S. veto, the UN Security Council delayed a crucial vote on a resolution calling for a ceasefire and humanitarian aid in the war-torn Gaza Strip.
The United Nations Security Council has postponed a vote on an Arab-sponsored resolution demanding an immediate cessation of hostilities and the unconditional release of all Israeli captives.
The delay aims to avoid a potential veto by the United States, Israel’s strongest ally.
The original resolution called for an “urgent and lasting cessation of hostilities,” but this language has been moderated to “urgent suspension of hostilities” as per an American request. The resolution’s core intent remains as the facilitation of urgent humanitarian aid and a permanent ceasefire.
It also proposes UN-monitored aid distribution in Gaza.
The Israeli assault on Gaza is entering its tenth week. More than 19,400 Palestinians have been killed, according to the Gaza Health Ministry, with nearly 85% of the territory’s population displaced from their homes.
U.S. and Israeli intelligence chiefs convened with Qatar’s Prime Minister in Poland. This meeting, the first of its kind since the termination of a weeklong ceasefire in late November, focused on brokering the release of more hostages.
UN officials and various aid agencies have sounded the alarm on the humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza.
The US has been facing increasing pressure following a vote by the UN General Assembly on December 12th. The assembly, with 153 votes in favour, 10 against, and 23 abstentions, urgently called for a ceasefire.
Unlike in the UNSC, where permanent members have veto power, such vetoes do not apply to General Assembly votes.
However, votes in the General Assembly represent global sentiment rather than having legal authority. Many such resolutions are often disregarded.