The implications of the recent UN Security Council resolution on Israel-Gaza ceasefire

The recent vote by the United Nations Security Council to support a US-proposed Israel-Gaza ceasefire plan has significant implications for the ongoing conflict in the region. The resolution sets out conditions for a “full and complete ceasefire”, including the release of hostages held by Hamas, the return of dead hostages’ remains, and the exchange of Palestinian prisoners.

Fourteen out of the 15 Security Council members, including the US, voted in favor of the resolution, with Russia abstaining. The resolution states that Israel has accepted the ceasefire proposal and urges Hamas to agree to it as well. The plan consists of three phases, culminating in a major reconstruction effort for Gaza, which has suffered extensive destruction during the conflict.

The first phase of the plan involves a hostage-prisoner swap and a short-term ceasefire. The second phase calls for a “permanent end to hostilities” and a full withdrawal of Israeli forces from Gaza. The third phase focuses on the long-term prospects for the enclave and initiates a multi-year reconstruction plan for Gaza.

While the resolution marks a significant step towards peace in the region, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has expressed reservations about parts of the plan and reiterated his commitment to military operations until Hamas is eliminated. The US Ambassador to the UN, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, welcomed the Security Council’s decision, emphasizing the importance of peace.

The UK Ambassador, Barbara Woodward, described the situation in Gaza as “catastrophic” and stressed the need for lasting peace to ensure security and stability for both Israelis and Palestinians. This resolution comes after weeks of diplomatic efforts, including President Joe Biden’s endorsement of a three-phase plan for a permanent ceasefire in Gaza.

The conflict in the region began when Hamas launched an attack on southern Israel, resulting in numerous casualties and hostages. The toll on both sides has been significant, with the death toll in Gaza exceeding 37,000 according to the Hamas-run health ministry. The latest resolution underscores the international community’s commitment to resolving the conflict and providing relief to the affected populations.