Algeria is circulating a revised draft resolution, which “demands an immediate humanitarian ceasefire that must be respected by all parties” in Gaza, among U.N. Security Council members.
The North African country, which is one of Israel’s harshest critics, is giving other members until close of business on Wednesday to offer comments.
The draft resolution also demands the implementation of the two previous Israel-Hamas war resolutions that have passed the 15-member council without a veto from one of the permanent five members: demanding the release of all hostages in Gaza and upholding of international law by all parties “in relation to all parties they detain.”
Algeria serves as the de facto Arab and Muslim world representative on the council. It called for an emergency council meeting last week to discuss the ramifications of a recent International Court of Justice ruling on Israel’s prosecution of the war on Hamas. (Located in The Hague, the ICJ is the main United Nations judicial arm.)
The United States and some of its allies interpret the the court’s decision differently than do pro-Palestinian nations. The latter insist that a ceasefire must be implemented to uphold the ICJ ruling although the court made no such explicit demand.
The United States has threatened a veto of Algeria’s draft, insisting that it would harm delicate and ongoing negotiations for a halt in fighting, coupled with a return of hostages held in Gaza and release of Palestinian security prisoners.
Hamas responded yesterday to an international proposal for such a deal. Israel is currently reviewing Hamas’s provisions and demands.
A vote on Algeria’s resolution is not expected this week, sources told JNS.
On Tuesday, Antony Blinken, the U.S. secretary of state, spoke with Ahmed Attaf, the Algerian foreign minister, about “regional issues of mutual concern, including the situation in Gaza.”
Blinken referred to “ongoing diplomatic efforts that could lead to a release of the remaining hostages held by Hamas as part of an extended humanitarian pause,” stated the Matthew Miller, the U.S. State Department spokesman.
“The secretary and the foreign minister also discussed the importance of protecting civilians consistent with international humanitarian law and agreed there must be no forced displacement of Palestinians from Gaza,” Miller added.