7th December, 2018
A General Assembly resolution put forward by the United States condemning the activities of Hamas and other militant groups in Gaza, have failed to be adopted by the UN Member States.
The U.S. resolution condemned Hamas for “repeatedly firing rockets into Israel and for inciting violence, thereby putting civilians at risk”.
The resolution also condemned Hamas for its use of resources in Gaza to construct military infrastructure “including tunnels to infiltrate Israel and equipment to launch rockets into civilian areas”.
It specified that further engagement by the UN Secretary-General, and the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, in efforts to de-escalate the situation in Gaza, was also needed.
A procedural vote held before the main vote on the resolution – calling for the latter to be decided on a two-thirds majority – passed in the chamber, narrowing the odds of the resolution passing successfully.
While a majority of UN Member States – 87 – voted in favour of the resolution, 57 voted against, with 33 abstentions, meaning that the resolution failed under the two-thirds ruling.
Before the votes, the U.S. Permanent Representative to the UN Nikki Haley said that in spite of more than 500 General Assembly resolutions condemning Israel, not one condemning Hamas has ever been adopted.
Haley described the votes, as “unfair” adding that the Hamas resolution was an opportunity for States to “do the right thing”.
The Israeli Ambassador, Danny Danon, said that the resolution had been a chance for “UN redemption,” and that those who had voted against it “should be ashamed of themselves”.
A number of States explained their reasons for voting against the resolution.
The Saudi Arabian representative stated that since 1967, Israel has not respected any General Assembly or Security Council resolutions.
Similarly, Kuwait and Iran’s representatives, who also voted against, said that the resolution “ignores” and “deflects attention from” the root causes of the conflict. (NAN)