Vote on a resolution for a ceasefire in Gaza: Israel deplores the “clear retreat” of the United States

The United Nations Security Council has decided

Vote on a resolution for a ceasefire in Gaza: Israel deplores the “clear retreat” of the United States

The United Nations Security Council has decided. On Monday March 25, the UN body voted in favor of an “immediate ceasefire” in the Gaza Strip, a call blocked several times by the United States, which this time abstained, provoking anger of their Israeli ally.

Immediately after the adoption of the resolution, Israel canceled an expected delegation's visit to Washington, asserting that the American abstention "hurts" both its war effort and its efforts to liberate the hostages. “This is a clear step back from the consistent position of the United States in the Security Council since the start of the war” on October 7, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office said in a statement.

For its part, the White House said it was surprised by Israel's disproportionate reaction. “It seems that the [Israeli] Prime Minister's office is trying to create the impression of divergence when it is not necessary,” lamented John Kirby, spokesperson for the American National Security Council, assuring that this decision represented “not a change of course.”

A change of tone

The spokesperson for the American State Department, Matthew Miller, assured that the United States would find a way to discuss the situation in Rafah, in the south of the Gaza Strip – where 1.4 million Palestinians have found refuge after fleeing bombings in the north of the enclave - despite the refusal of the Israeli Prime Minister to send the delegation planned for this purpose. Secretary of State Antony Blinken “will likely discuss Rafah with Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant,” he added. His visit to Washington was maintained.

“We believe that this large-scale invasion would be a mistake,” continued Mr. Miller, who deplores “immense” risks for civilians. “This type of invasion would weaken Israel’s security” and “damage its position in the world,” he said.

Carried by non-permanent members of the Council, the resolution voted on Monday demands “an immediate ceasefire for the month of Ramadan” – which began two weeks ago –, should “lead to a ceasefire lasting”, and “demands the immediate and unconditional release of all hostages”.

The text was adopted by 14 votes in favor and one abstention, those of the United States. Allies of Israel, they had until then systematically opposed the term “ceasefire” in UN resolutions, blocking three texts to this effect. In recent weeks, however, they have shown signs of changing their position, while the Biden administration supported, at the start of the conflict, the land operation in the south of the Gaza Strip. But with more than 32,000 deaths in the Palestinian enclave, according to Hamas, and the increasing risk of famine, the United States had said it wanted to redouble its efforts for a truce.

A change of tone which led to a proposed resolution on the “necessity” of a ceasefire, rejected on Friday by Russia and China, who considered that the American text did not explicitly call for a ceasefire. -immediate fire.