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UN Security Council adopts US draft resolution supporting Gaza cease-fire deal

A US spokesperson urged the UN “not to let this opportunity pass.”

The United Nations Security Council on Monday afternoon adopted a US draft resolution urging Hamas to accept the latest ceasefire agreement and release of hostages.

Fourteen Council members voted in favor of the measure and only one – Russia – chose to abstain.

Nate Evans, a spokesman for the U.S. mission to the United Nations, noted in a statement before the vote that the agreement would, among other things, allow a pause in the fighting, the release of a number of hostages and an immediate increase in humanitarian aid.

“Israel has accepted this proposal and the Security Council has the opportunity to speak with one voice and call on Hamas to do the same,” its statement continued. “This would help save the lives and suffering of civilians in Gaza as well as the hostages and their families. Council members should not let this opportunity pass and must speak with one voice in support of this agreement.”

U.S. Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield made a similar argument just before the vote, saying that every day the war continues, “needless suffering continues.”

“Dear colleagues, after eight months of devastation, pain and trauma, what is needed now more than ever is a lasting end to the fighting,” she said. “The United States and every country in this room want an immediate ceasefire with the release of the hostages. We have heard these calls time and time again since October 7. The opportunity is now. We must to input. “.

President Joe Biden backed the deal in late May, announcing that Israel had degraded Hamas’s capabilities and that it was “time for this war to end” and “the next day begins.”

Biden also outlined the three phases of the plan, the first lasting six weeks and consisting of a ceasefire, the withdrawal of Israeli forces from populated areas of Gaza, the release of a number of hostages and the release of Palestinian prisoners.

The second phase would mark the start of a “final cessation of hostilities,” Biden said, if Hamas complies with the commitments set out in the agreement, as well as the release of all remaining hostages. The final phase would include a reconstruction of Gaza and the return of the hostages’ remains to their families.

The State Department said last week that it was consulting with Israel on the draft U.N. resolution, even though Israel is not a member of the council.

The vote comes as Secretary of State Antony Blinken is in the Middle East continuing negotiations on the ceasefire agreement and hostage taking.

As he left Cairo earlier Monday for Tel Aviv, Blinken called it a “critical moment.”

“My message to governments across the region, to people across the region: If you want a ceasefire, pressure Hamas to say yes,” Blinken told reporters. “If you want to alleviate the terrible suffering of Palestinians in Gaza, pressure Hamas to say yes.

“If you want to bring all the hostages home, put pressure on Hamas to say yes,” he continued. “If you want to put today’s Palestinians and Israelis on a path to more lasting peace and security, if you want to stop this conflict from spreading, put pressure on Hamas to say yes.”

News Source : abcnews.go.com
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