First notice, Israel: the US will ask for an 'immediate ceasefire' in Gaza for the first time at the UN

The United States will vote on a resolution on Friday in which, for the first time, it will specifically request “an immediate ceasefire” in Gazaafter having opposed three resolutions from other countries that requested it.

It was the US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken, who announced a few hours ago in Cairo that the resolution had been presented to the Council, and finally the text will be put to a vote of the fifteen members of the Council on the morning of Friday, the 22nd. March.

Blinken made it clear that the ceasefire in Loop would be “linked to the release of the hostages” in the hands of Hamasalthough that release is no longer a precondition, as it appeared in the first versions of the text circulated by American diplomats.

The United States has needed to present six different versions for more than a month to reach what seems to be a consensus text, but it remains to be seen if it obtains the support of nine countries and is not vetoed by any permanent member country (in this case Russia or China), two necessary conditions to approve any resolution.

The key paragraph of Washington's resolution says that an “immediate and sustained ceasefire is imperative to protect civilians on both sides, enable the delivery of essential humanitarian assistance, alleviate human suffering (…) and support efforts diplomats to guarantee that ceasefire in connection with the release of all hostages.”

The publication last Monday of a UN report that warned that In a matter of days, 1.1 million Gazans face the most serious levels of famine and food insecurity appears to have accelerated US diplomatic efforts.

The French ambassador to the UN, Nicolas de Rivière, came out that same Monday to ask for urgent action from the Council to stop the war “now, not next week,” he said graphically.

The ceasefire in Gaza, a matter of vocabulary

In the previous resolutions vetoed by the United States, American diplomacy criticized several details: that they did not include Israel's right to defend itself, that they did not condemn Hamas as a “terrorist” and that if a ceasefire was declared, it would allow the rearmament of Hamas. .

Therefore, in this resolution that Washington is now promoting, those same ideas appear in some way but in a more toned down tone, in order to gain the support of member countries such as Russia, China or Algeriawhich have been harshly criticized on past occasions the American attitude of unwavering support for Israelfiercely opposed to a ceasefire.

It is true that the new resolution makes precise allusions to the protection of civilians, access for humanitarian aid, opposition to altering Gaza map with 'security corridors' and the rejection of the forced displacement of the Palestinian population, arguments that can garner unanimous support from all countries.

However, it also contains phrases that are more difficult to reach consensus, such as the request to member states to “intensify their efforts to suppress the financing of terrorism, including restrictions on the financing of Hamas.”

In any case, calls for a ceasefire already come from all UN agencies, from Muslim, African and Asian countries, and now also from the majority of the Western world, including countries that in the first weeks of the war had a more pro-Israeli attitude as in the case of France and the United Kingdom.