153 member countries vote in favour of Gaza ceasefire in UNSC

United Nations: 18,000 people killed in Gaza since fighting began, about 70 per cent women and children

BY | Wednesday, 13 December, 2023

The Member States of the United Nations Security Council voted overwhelmingly in favour of “immediate humanitarian ceasefire” in Gaza, the immediate and unconditional release of all hostages and “ensuring humanitarian access”. Out of 193 members, 153 voted in favour and 10 against, with 23 abstentions.

Among the countries that voted against were United States of America, Austria and Israel.

Following the voting, a resolution was passed in the UNSC that stated –

Expressing grave concern over the catastrophic humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip and the suffering of the Palestinian civilian population, and emphasizing that the Palestinian and Israeli civilian populations must be protected in accordance with international humanitarian law,

  1. Demands an immediate humanitarian ceasefire;
  2. Reiterates its demand that all parties comply with their obligations under international law, including international humanitarian law, notably with regard to the protection of civilians;
  3. Demands the immediate and unconditional release of all hostages, as well as ensuring humanitarian access;
  4. Decides to adjourn the tenth emergency special session temporarily and to authorize the President of the General Assembly at its most recent session to resume its meeting upon request from Member States.

Prior to the resolution, two amendments, proposed by Austria, making specific reference to extremist group Hamas were voted down by members.

The war began on 7 October 2023 after Hamas militants rampaged through communities in southern Israel killing 1,200 people and taking around 240 hostage prompting retaliation from Israel.

According to the Gazan health authorities, about 18,000 people have now been killed in Gaza since the fighting began; about 70 per cent are said to be women and children; and more than 49,000 people are reportedly injured, UN News said.

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