The United Nations General Assembly has overwhelming voted in favour of demanding an immediate ceasefire on the Gaza Strip.
A total of 153 of the 193 member states voted in favour of a ceasefire on Tuesday. There were 10 votes against – including the USA and Israel – with 23 absentions, reports the BBC.
Palestinian representative Riyad Mansour hailed the vote an “historic day”. Before the vote, Israel’s Gilad Erdan said “a ceasefire only serves to prolong Hamas’s reign of terror”.
Senior Hamas official Bassem Naeem told the BBC that the passing of the resolution confirmed that “the prevailing international will is in favour of stopping the aggression against the Palestinian people”.
Although the United States voted against a ceasefire, President Joe Biden had earlier warned Israel it could lose international support because of “indiscriminate bombing” of Palestinians. He was also left p[[psomg Osrae;’s view about the future of the Strip, claiming Israel opposed a two-state solution.
Tuesday’s vote was the second attempt from the UN to end the conflict. In October, it had called for “a humanitarian truce” in a resolution adopted with 121 votes in favour, 14 against and 44 abstentions.
Although they are not legally binding, a UN resolution is seen as a way to measure international opinion. UN Secretary General António Guterres has long been pushing for a humanitarian ceasefire to prevent a “complete breakdown of public order” in Gaza.
Israel has carrying out airstrikes in Gaza as well as a ground offensive after a Hamas attack on October 7. Israeli officials say 1,200 were killed and another 240 taken hostage.