While Guterres is unlikely to be welcomed in Israel, US President Joe Biden is scheduled to go there on Wednesday to show solidarity with it…reports Asian Lite News
A UN Security Council resolution co-sponsored by Bangladesh, Pakistan, Russia and several Arab countries calling for a ceasefire in Israel and Gaza, but made no mention of Hamas, has failed.
The resolution was put to vote Monday night after the Council members could not agree on a common approach despite a last-minute attempt by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to forge a consensus at a closed meeting.
The sticking point was that the resolution did not name Hamas as the perpetrator of the attack on Israel that killed at least 1,700 people in Israel and has led to the retaliatory bombing of Gaza by Israel which is amassing forces for a possible ground attack.
Permanent members, the US, Britain and France voted against the resolution but their negative votes did not count as vetoes as the resolution died without the minimum of nine votes required for it to be adopted. Japan also voted against the resolution.
Only Russia, China, Mozambique, Gabon and the UAE voted for the resolution, while six countries abstained. Consideration of a dueling resolution proposed by Council president Brazil which names Hamas as responsible for the “heinous terrorist attack” on Israel was put off till at least Tuesday for negotiations for a consensus.
Russia, which holds the threat of a veto, has proposed amendments to the draft resolution. While the Council is paralysed and the humanitarian crisis in Gaza is mounting with over 2,700 deaths from Israeli bombings,
Secretary-General Antonio Guterres announced plans to visit Egypt on Thursday. Israel has also told about 1 million people in the northern part of Gaza to move to the south in anticipation of a ground assault.
Guterres has said that the Middle East is on “the verge of an abyss” and called on Israel to lift the blockade on Gaza where food and water supplies are perilously dwindling and people are not able to move out.
Gaza abuts Egypt and relief supplies could be routed through it and people allowed to leave Gaza into the African country. Guterres’s spokesperson Stephane Dujarric said that he may visit the Rafah crossing that connects the enclave with Egypt but has no plans now to enter Gaza.
While Guterres is unlikely to be welcomed in Israel, US President Joe Biden is scheduled to go there on Wednesday to show solidarity with it.
He will also stop by Amman for meetings with Egypt’s President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi, Palestine Authority President Mahmoud Abbas and Jordan’s King Abdullah.
The failed resolution had a total of 26 co-sponsors, most of them Muslim nations, and was a bid by Russia to force a vote that would array the major Western countries against it hoping to score points in the Arab world and among countries sympathetic to Palestine.
But for the direct condemnation of Hamas, the essence of the Brazil and the failed resolutions were the same: Both condemn violence and terrorism against civilians, call for a ceasefire and the freeing of hostages.
US Permanent Representative Linda Thomas-Greenfield said the October 7 Hamas attack “was the worst massacre of Jewish people since the Holocaust” and it ”brought to the surface painful scars left by a millennia of antisemitism”.