U.N. Calls for Immediate Humanitarian Ceasefire in Gaza amidst Humanitarian Crisis, U.S. and Israel Reject Resolution

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The 193-member U.N. General Assembly approved a resolution this week calling for a ceasefire, with 153 countries voting in favor, eight against, and 23 abstaining.

The U.S. and Israel voted against the resolution, saying that a ceasefire would only benefit Hamas terrorist groups.

U.S.  Ambassador to the UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield said that Washington does “agree that the humanitarian situation in Gaza is dire…and that civilians must be protected with international humanitarian law” but urged nations to support an amendment to the resolution condemning Hamas, which did not pass.

”A ceasefire right now would be temporary at best and dangerous at worst,” she said. “Dangerous to Israelis, who would be subject to relentless attacks, and also dangerous to Palestinians who deserve the chance to build a better future for themselves free from a group that hides behind innocent civilians.”

Meanwhile, The Palestinian Authority approved the resolution and urged countries to encourage Israel to approve a ceasefire. A Hamas official in exile, Izzat El-Reshiq, in a statement on Telegram, said Israel should “stop its aggression, genocide, and ethnic cleansing against our people.”

Australia, Canada, and New Zealand released a joint statement, saying they support a ceasefire. 

“The price of defeating Hamas cannot be the continuous suffering of all Palestinian civilians,” leaders of the three countries said in a joint statement.

More than 18,000 people have been killed in Gaza since the violence started in October when Hamas soldiers launched a surprise attack on Israel that killed 1,200 people and where 240 people were abducted. Some 50,000 people have been wounded in the fighting.

U.N. officials have said that vital infrastructure for civilians has been decimated, and there is limited access to fresh water, food, and medicine. 

The World Health Organization also said last week that diseases and illnesses stemming from the harsh conditions of war could kill more people.

“Eventually, we will see more people dying from the disease than we are even seeing from the bombardment if we are not able to put back [together] this health system and provide the basics of life: food, water, medicines, and of course fuel to operate the hospitals,” WHO spokesperson Margaret Harris said Wednesday.

Photo Courtesy: ©Getty Images/Christopher Furlong / Staff

Video Courtesy: Guardian via YouTube

Amanda Casanova is a writer living in Dallas, Texas. She has covered news for since 2014. She has also contributed to The Houston Chronicle, U.S. News and World Report and She blogs at The Migraine Runner.


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