The UN Security Council adopts a resolution on three-phase ceasefire deal in Gaza

The United Nations Security Council passed a US-drafted resolution on permanent ceasefire in Gaza. A resolution, welcoming a comprehensive three-phase ceasefire deal, was adopted with 14 votes in favor and abstention from Russia.

Resolution 2735 supports a US-backed ceasefire proposal, announced by President Biden on 31 May and calls on both parties, Israel and Hamas, to fully implement its terms without delay and condition.

Slovenia welcomes the adoption of a resolution and appreciates the ongoing efforts of Egyptian, Qatari and the US mediators. An immediate ceasefire is the first step towards achieving a comprehensive solution.

President Biden’s proposal would begin with an initial six-week cease-fire with a number of elements, including the safe distribution of life-saving aid, the release of hostages in exchange for Palestinian prisoners and the withdrawal of Israeli forces from Gaza. Phase two suggests a permanent end to hostilities “in exchange for the release of all other hostages still in Gaza, and a full withdrawal of Israeli forces from Gaza.” Finally, in phase three a “major multi-year reconstruction plan for Gaza and the return of the remains of any deceased hostages still in Gaza to their families” would take place.

A strong support for the resolution among Council members is adding pressure on Israel and Hamas to accept the deal and end the war.

Slovenia underlined its consistent call for the full respect of international law, including international humanitarian and human rights law. “International law is clear. It prohibits hostage taking. It prohibits the denial of humanitarian access to civilians and attacks against humanitarian workers. It includes the right to voluntary return of displaced persons,” stressed Deputy Permanent Representative (DPR) Ondina Blokar Drobič in the Council Chamber. She added that many of the elements of the US-deal should already be taking place – along with the implementation of the three previous Security Council resolutions on Gaza and the ICJ orders on provisional measures.

Given the Israeli attack on Nuseirat refugee camp on 8 June that reportedly killed at least 270 Palestinians, Deputy Permanent Representative underlined that such military operation for the release of hostages simply cannot be a new normality. “The principles of international humanitarian law and human rights law apply to hostage rescue operations as well,” she highlighted and stressed that instances like the UN premises targeted, hospitals sieged, mass graves and the denial of humanitarian aid to civilians should never have happened.

All these are the reasons why Slovenia reiterated its relentless call for an immediate ceasefire. Finally, Slovenia supported an international peace conference under the UN auspices and highlighted its strong support for a two-state solution. “Only two sovereign and equal states can make this peace happen. It is for that reason that my country last week recognized Palestine as an independent and sovereign state,” concluded DPR Blokar Drobič.

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