UN assembly moves past Security Council to take lead on Gaza

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The U.N. General Assembly is due to vote Tuesday on a non-binding resolution demanding “an immediate humanitarian ceasefire” in Gaza — a call that the paralyzed Security Council has so far failed to make.

The United States, one of only five permanent members of the Security Council, used its veto on Friday to halt a draft text calling for a ceasefire, the latest sign of impasse.

The Council took more than a month after the start of the war between Israel and Hamas militants to speak with one weak voice, calling in mid-November after four rejected texts for humanitarian “pauses” in the conflict.

U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has warned of a looming “complete breakdown of public order” in the besieged Gaza Strip.

Many countries and human rights organizations deplored last Friday’s Security Council failure, and Guterres on Sunday described the Council’s authority and credibility as “undermined.”

Israeli air and land attacks continue to pummel Gaza, more than two months after the bloody and unprecedented attack perpetrated by Hamas fighters on Israeli soil on October 7.

Some 1,200 Israelis were killed in the initial attack, while the Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza says 18,205 Palestinians have died in Israel’s bombardment since.

The U.N. itself is mourning the death of more than 100 of its own aid workers since the onset of war.

“There are those who cannot see reality as they should see it,” Palestinian ambassador to the UN Riyad Mansour said on Friday after the US veto.

“But eventually they will cave in under the massive pressure of humanity from one corner of the globe to the other corner.”

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