UNSC backs plan for Israel-Hamas ceasefire

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The United Nations Security Council on Monday (June 10) adopted a US-drafted resolution backing a proposal outlined by President Joe Biden for a ceasefire between Israel and Palestinian militants Hamas in the Gaza Strip.

Russia abstained from the vote, while the remaining 14 council members voted in favour.

The US had finalised its text on Sunday after six days of negotiations among the council.

Biden laid out a three-phase ceasefire plan on May 31 that he described as an Israeli initiative.

Some Security Council members questioned whether Israel had accepted the plan to end the fighting in Gaza.

The resolution welcomes the new ceasefire proposal, “which Israel accepted, calls upon Hamas to also accept it, and urges both parties to fully implement its terms without delay and without condition.”

“We’re waiting on Hamas to agree to the ceasefire deal it claims to want,” US Ambassador to the UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield told the council before the vote.

“With every passing day, needless suffering continues.”

The resolution also goes into detail about the proposal, and spells out that “if the negotiations take longer than six weeks for phase one, the ceasefire will still continue as long as negotiations continue.”

The council in March demanded for an immediate ceasefire and unconditional release of all hostages held by Hamas.

For months, negotiators from the US, Egypt and Qatar have been trying to mediate a ceasefire.

Hamas says it wants a permanent end to the war in the Gaza Strip and Israeli withdrawal from the enclave of 2.3 million people.

Israel is retaliating against Hamas, which rules Gaza, over an October 7 attack by its militants.

More than 1 200 people were killed and over 250 taken hostage by Hamas on October 7, according to Israeli tallies.

More than 100 hostages are believed to remain captive in Gaza.

Israel launched an air, ground and sea assault on the Palestinian territory, killing more than 37 000 Palestinians, according to Gaza health authorities.

UNSC adopts a ceasefire draft resolution aimed at ending Israel-Hamas war