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UN Passes Ceasefire Resolution in Gaza as Blinken presses Israel and Hamas

The United Nations Security Council on Monday approved a US-backed ceasefire plan in the Gaza Strip, with only Russia abstaining, a sign of growing frustration among major powers. world about the war and the desire to end it.

Linda Thomas-Greenfield, the US ambassador to the United Nations, told Security Council members that Israel had agreed to the deal set out in the resolution – although Israel has so far opposed its introduction. public stance on the issue – and she urged Hamas “to do the same.”

“Hamas can now see that the international community is united, united behind an agreement that will save lives and help Palestinian civilians in Gaza begin to rebuild and heal,” Ms. Thomas-Greenfield said.

The 14-0 vote could strengthen the hand of Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken, who returned to the Middle East on Monday to press Hamas and Israel to agree to a ceasefire.

But given the difficulties Mr. Blinken and other mediators encountered in reaching a final agreement, Israel’s representative to the United Nations, Reut Shapir Ben-Naftaly, did not say that Israel had accepted the terms of the ceasefire plan. She said that her country’s goals in the war had not changed and would use military operations to free the hostages, as happened just two days ago.

“We will continue until all the hostages are returned and Hamas’s military capabilities are dismantled,” Ms. Shapir Ben-Naftaly told the Council. She said if Hamas leaders freed all the hostages and turned themselves in, “not a single shot would have been fired.”

In contrast, Hamas said it welcomed elements of the resolution, but did not endorse the entire plan. “Hamas underlined its readiness to cooperate with mediators to engage in indirect negotiations,” the organization said in a statement.

An Israeli political shift over the weekend could further complicate Israel’s position in ceasefire negotiations. Mr. Blinken met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, whose wartime emergency government is confused by the withdrawal of the moderate National Unity party and its leader. Benny Gantzfrom Netanyahu’s wartime government.

The move encouraged far-right parties in Netanyahu’s coalition to oppose the ceasefire.

It is also unclear whether Israel’s raid on Gaza on Saturday, which freed four hostages from Hamas captivity but killed dozens of Palestinians, could hinder the militant group’s chances of agreeing to a deal. favorable or not.

It remains unclear until the Security Council votes on Monday whether Russia and China, which have veto power, will allow the latest ceasefire resolution to pass. In the end, China voted in favor and Russia abstained.

The United States vetoed it three previous ceasefire resolutions since the war in Gaza began in October. Then Russia and China vetoed the US resolution because they called for an immediate ceasefire. In March, the United States allowed a ceasefire resolution to be passedabstain from voting instead of vetoing it.

Last month, a US official said that the US had a plan to prevent it draft resolution from Algeria described Israel as an “occupying power” in Gaza and called for an immediate halt to Israel’s military offensive on the city of Rafah.

The proposal adopted by the Security Council on Monday is based on three-phase plan was set forth by President Biden in May. It would begin with an immediate, temporary ceasefire and progress to a permanent end to the war and the reconstruction of Gaza. The plan also calls for the release of more than 100 people detained in Gaza, although it is unclear how many are still alive, and a much larger number of Palestinians held in Israeli prisons.

Mr. Blinken, making his eighth trip to the Middle East since the Hamas-led attack on Israel on October 7, emphasized in his meeting with Mr. Netanyahu that the proposal “would lead to an immediate ceasefire.” news in Gaza, the release of all hostages and a significant and sustained increase in humanitarian assistance for distribution throughout Gaza,” Matthew Miller, a State Department spokesman, said afterward.

“The Secretary emphasized America’s ironclad commitment to Israel’s security, including ensuring October 7 can never be repeated.”

More than two weeks have passed since Israel presented the agreement to Hamas through intermediaries, but Netanyahu’s government has not yet officially accepted the agreement. And as of Monday, there had been no official response to the proposal from​​Hamas.

A key sticking point is whether a deal would leave Hamas, which ruled Gaza before the war, with the power to exercise some control over the territory. Mr Netanyahu has described it as a red line.

Another issue concerns the exact timing and logistics of the ceasefire. Netanyahu has publicly declared that Israel’s offensive in Gaza must continue until Hamas’s military and administrative capabilities are destroyed. But Hamas has made any progress on the hostage deal on the condition that Israel commit to a permanent ceasefire and withdraw all troops from Gaza.

A statement by the U.S. mission to the United Nations on Sunday hinted at Gaza’s post-war future, saying the ceasefire would lead to “a roadmap for a complete end to the crisis and a plan for The project lasted many years and received international support. The statement did not provide further details or explain how Mr. Blinken planned to sell the plan to Israel and other regional parties during his three-day trip to the Middle East.

The politics of achieving a ceasefire, between the warring parties and at the United Nations, have been extremely complicated.

During his trip, Blinken plans to visit Qatar, which along with Egypt is mediating between Israel and Hamas, which do not speak directly to each other. Qatar hosts political leaders of Hamas.

Mr. Blinken’s effort comes after several days of inconclusiveness Visit Egypt and Qatar last week by the C.IA. director, William J. Burns, and Brett McGurk, the top White House official in charge of Middle East affairs, are pursuing a truce.

In Jordan, Blinken will attend a conference Tuesday on humanitarian aid to Gaza co-hosted by Jordan, Egypt and the United Nations.


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