UPDATING LIVE: Security Council to vote on ceasefire in Gaza


The Security Council is due to meet at 10:00 AM in New York to vote on a resolution on Gaza calling for “an immediate humanitarian ceasefire that must be respected by all parties”. Following all our live coverage here of another day of high stakes diplomacy.

09:30 AM: Tabled by Algeria, the draft resolution would also have the Council reiterate its demand that all parties scrupulously comply with their obligations under international law regarding the protection of civilians.

Threat of veto looms 

The Council needs at least nine votes to be able to adopt the draft resolution.

Media reports indicate that the United States may veto it, as it has publicly said it would referring to earlier drafts during this weeks-long negotiating process.

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The term “ceasefire” has been contentious, with the US having vetoed a previous draft resolution late last year tabled by the United Arab Emirates.

If this happens again today, the General Assembly would again organize an emergency special session through a mechanism set up to examine the use of veto, which is a privilege of the Council’s five permanent members – China, France, Russia, United Kingdom and the United States.

Algeria’s draft on the table today would have the Council reject the “forced displacement of the Palestinian civilian population in violation of international law and would demand an immediate end to any such violations and the immediate and unconditional release of all hostages. It would, among other things, call for unfettered humanitarian access into and throughout Gaza.

The Council has held more than a dozen meetings on the war in Gaza, including an open debate in late January, with more than 70 UN Member States voicing serious concerns about the ongoing humanitarian catastrophe.

Many called on the Security Council to “work harder” to end the war, which began in October when Israeli invaded the enclave in response to Hamas’s attacks that left 1,200 dead and 240 taken hostage. To date, almost 30,000 Palestinians have been killed, according to local health authorities.

Here are some highlights from the previous Council meeting focused on Gaza on 23 January:


  • Israel’s “clear and repeated rejection” of the two-State solution “is unacceptable”, said UN Secretary-General António Guterres, adding that “this refusal, and the denial of the right to statehood to the Palestinian people, would indefinitely prolong a conflict that has become a major threat to global peace and security.”
  • Council members roundly called for the two-State solution to be realized and for an end to the war, with many calling for an immediate ceasefire to end the suffering of Palestinians and allow the aid they urgently need to be delivered unhindered
  • Many speakers from the wider UN membership echoed those calls
  • “Stop this massacre,” said the Deputy Prime Minister of Jordan
  • “We are running out of time. There are two choices: a spreading fire or a ceasefire,” said the Foreign Affairs Minister for the Observer State of Palestine
  • Israel’s Ambassador said if the Council continues to provide aid to Gaza without considering the Iranian threat, the world faces “a very dark future”

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