Signal: UN postpones Gaza ceasefire vote for second time

The United Nations (UN) Security Council yesterday (20 December) postponed voting on a resolution on a temporary cease-fire in Gaza for the second time in a row at the request of the US.

Diplomats in New York have been negotiating the wording of the resolution for days.

The current text, compiled by the United Arab Emirates (UAE) calls Israel to “enable, facilitate and enable the prompt, safe and unimpeded delivery of humanitarian aid” at scale to the Palestinian population of Gaza.

It also demands that Israel and Hamas agree to an “urgent cessation of hostilities.”

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Security Council members are due to vote on the draft resolution later today (December 21).

Will the US veto the resolution again?

On December 8, around 13 of the 15 members of the UN Security Council voted in favor of an immediate ceasefire in Gaza – but the resolution was vetoed by the US, while the UK abstained.

Eyebrows have been raised over the US’s veto power in the UN Security Council, which it used at least 34 times to block resolutions critical of longtime ally Israel; Al Jazeera mentionted.

Asked whether the US would veto the resolution again, Secretary of State Anthony Blinken said Washington was working to ensure aid to Gaza was not complicated by events at the Security Council in New York.

A second temporary truce?

Some interpreted the arrival of Qatar-based Hamas political leader Ismail Haniyeh for talks in Cairo yesterday as a positive sign of a possible truce.

The last time Haniyeh came to the negotiating table he struck the first deal in November involving the release of 110 hostages.

Israel strongly opposes a permanent ceasefire. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has said that Israel’s attack on Gaza will not end until Hamas is dismantled.

An earlier week-long cease-fire was left in tatters after brutal killings in Jerusalem and Jenin.

Earlier today (December 21), the World Health Organization (WHO) said that northern Gaza no longer has a functioning hospital.

This was due to “lack of fuel, personnel and supplies”, according to WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

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Read the original at Defence247.gr

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