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UN Security Council to Vote on US-Backed Ceasefire Resolution for Israel and Hamas

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The United Nations Security Council is set to vote today on a resolution put forward by the United States in support of a ceasefire proposal outlined by President Joe Biden for the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas in Gaza. The US finalized the text of the resolution on Sunday following six days of negotiations among the 15-member council. The outcome of the vote is uncertain as it remains to be seen whether Russia and China, both possessing veto powers, will allow the adoption of the draft.

In order for the resolution to pass, it will require at least nine votes in favour and no vetoes by the US, France, Britain, China, or Russia. President Biden unveiled a three-phase ceasefire plan on May 31, characterizing it as an Israeli initiative. However, some Security Council members have expressed doubts regarding Israel’s acceptance of the plan to bring an end to the hostilities in Gaza.

The draft resolution expressly welcomes the new ceasefire proposal, which Israel has purportedly accepted, and calls upon Hamas to do the same. It further urges both parties to expeditiously and unconditionally implement the terms of the ceasefire. Importantly, the text of the resolution stipulates that if negotiations for the initial phase exceed six weeks, the ceasefire will persist for the duration of the negotiations. It is worth noting that the council had previously demanded an immediate ceasefire and unconditional release of all hostages held by Hamas back in March. Efforts to mediate a ceasefire have been ongoing for months, with negotiators from the US, Egypt, and Qatar spearheading these endeavours.

Hamas has reiterated its demand for a permanent cessation of hostilities in Gaza and for an Israeli withdrawal from the densely populated enclave housing 2.3 million people. The impending vote on the US-backed resolution underscores the pressing need for a diplomatic resolution to the conflict between Israel and Hamas in Gaza.

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