Israel Palestine Conflict

US vetoes UN Security Council resolution calling for Gaza ceasefire

Published: Updated:
Read Mode
100% Font Size
4 min read

The United States on Friday vetoed a UN Security Council resolution that would have called for an immediate ceasefire in the intense fighting between Israel and Hamas in Gaza.

Washington wielding its veto dashes a growing clamor for an immediate ceasefire that had been led by UN Chief Antonio Guterres and Arab nations.

Guterres had convened an emergency meeting of the UN Security Council after weeks of fighting left more than 17,487 people dead in Gaza, mostly women and children, according to the latest toll from the health ministry in Hamas-run Gaza.

For all the latest headlines follow our Google News channel online or via the app.

“The United Arab Emirates is deeply disappointed,” said the representative of the UAE who had sponsored the resolution calling for a ceasefire.

“Regrettably... this council is unable to demand a humanitarian ceasefire.”

Washington defended its veto, and attacked the resolution’s sponsors, criticizing them for rushing it through and leaving the call for an unconditional ceasefire unchanged.

“This resolution still contains a call for an unconditional ceasefire... it would leave Hamas in place able to repeat what it did on October 7,” said US deputy UN representative Robert Wood.

As a permanent Security Council member, Washington can veto any resolution, while Britain, also a member, abstained on the vote.

Ahead of the vote, Guterres had said that “the brutality perpetrated by Hamas can never justify the collective punishment of the Palestinian people.”

‘Complicit’ in slaughter

Vowing to destroy Hamas, Israel has relentlessly bombarded Gaza and sent in tanks and ground troops since the war began on October 7 with unprecedented attacks by Hamas on southern Israel.

Those attacks left 1,200 people dead, Israel says.

Earlier this week, Israel called on the UN to investigate one aspect of the attack -- alleged sexual violence by Hamas fighters against Israeli women.”

“I unreservedly condemn those attacks. I am appalled by the reports of sexual violence,” Guterres said ahead of the vote.

“There is no possible justification for deliberately killing some 1,200 people, including 33 children, injuring thousands more, and taking hundreds of hostages.”

Guterres deployed rarely-used Article 99 of the UN Charter to bring to the council’s attention “any matter which in his opinion may threaten the maintenance of international peace and security.”

No one in his job had done this in decades.

Guterres had sought a “humanitarian ceasefire” to prevent “a catastrophe with potentially irreversible implications for Palestinians” and the entire Middle East.

After the US vetoed the resolution, Wood said it was “divorced from reality” and “would have not moved the needle forward on the ground.”

Medecins Sans Frontiers said that Security Council inaction made the body “complicit in the ongoing slaughter.”

Several previous attempts to pass a resolution calling for a ceasefire were vetoed.

Vast areas of Gaza have been reduced to a wasteland. The United Nations says about 80 percent of the population has been displaced, facing shortages of food, fuel, water and medicine, along with the threat of disease.

“International humanitarian law includes the duty to protect civilians,” Guterres said.

Read more:

No talks about ‘day after’ until Gaza ceasefire reached: Saudi FM

Palestine FM can’t speak to media due to US visa restrictions, Prince Faisal says

Biden administration asks Congress to approve sale of shells for Israeli tanks

Top Content Trending