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US Proposes Temporary Ceasefire in Gaza, Warns Israel Against Invasion of Rafah

Gulan Media February 20, 2024 News
US Proposes Temporary Ceasefire in Gaza, Warns Israel Against Invasion of Rafah

In a significant move, the United States has put forward a draft resolution at the UN Security Council, urging for a temporary ceasefire in Gaza amid escalating tensions. This proposal marks a departure from the US's previous stance, as it has traditionally avoided using the term "ceasefire" during UN votes on the conflict. However, President Joe Biden's administration has shifted its position, aligning with calls for a cessation of hostilities.

The US draft resolution also includes a warning to Israel against launching an invasion of the densely populated city of Rafah. With more than a million displaced Palestinians seeking shelter in Rafah, the city is already overwhelmed, housing about half of Gaza's population. The potential consequences of an Israeli offensive in Rafah are dire, as highlighted by the UN, which has warned of the possibility of a "slaughter" if such an operation proceeds.

While the US intends to veto another draft resolution put forward by Algeria, which calls for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire, it acknowledges the need to address Israel's plans for Rafah. The US draft emphasizes the potential harm to civilians and the risk of further displacement, including into neighboring countries like Egypt. Additionally, it underscores the serious implications such actions would have on regional peace and security.

Talks on the US draft resolution are set to commence this week, although it remains uncertain when or if the proposal will be put to a vote. Despite being non-legally binding, any resolutions passed at the UN carry significant diplomatic weight.

This marks the first time the US has explicitly called for a temporary ceasefire in Gaza at the UN, a departure from its past stance of vetoing similar resolutions. The draft resolution aligns with President Biden's recent conversations with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, urging for a cessation of hostilities.

However, Netanyahu has remained steadfast in his commitment to proceed with the planned operation, citing the need to rescue hostages and defeat Hamas across Gaza. Israeli war cabinet member Benny Gantz has issued a deadline of March 10th, coinciding with the start of Ramadan, for Hamas to release all hostages, failing which the maneuver will be initiated.

Amid mounting pressure from the international community, particularly the Arab group of nations, the Security Council faces calls to heed demands for a ceasefire. The coming days will be critical as discussions unfold and decisions are made regarding the proposed resolution, with the hope of alleviating the suffering and restoring stability in Gaza.

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