Get Informed, Stay Inspired

The Security Council is currently in discussions regarding a resolution for Gaza that urges an immediate halt to hostilities.
Middle East World News

The Security Council is currently in discussions regarding a resolution for Gaza that urges an immediate halt to hostilities.

3:45 PM

Based on the most recent update from the Security Council, the updated schedule shows that the expected meeting, originally scheduled for 5:00 PM to vote on a resolution proposed by the UAE after several days of negotiation, has been postponed once again.

Proposed motion: Main ideas

A recording of today’s Security Council meeting was captured on video.

  • Requests that the opposing groups “permit, assist, and make possible the prompt, secure, and unimpeded distribution of humanitarian aid” on a large scale to the people of Gaza.

  • Urgent cessation of hostilities is being requested in order to allow for safe and unobstructed access.

  • The resolution expresses serious worry about the severe and quickly worsening humanitarian crisis in Gaza and the serious consequences it has on the civilians living there.

  • The Council restates its deep concern about how the conflict is disproportionately affecting women and children. It emphasizes the responsibility to uphold and safeguard humanitarian aid and healthcare workers.

  • Notices the reopening of the Karem Abu Salem or Kerem Shalom crossing from Israel to expedite the delivery of assistance, and requests that all parties permit the use of all land, sea, and air routes to facilitate a greater amount of aid.

  • Asking the United Nations leader to establish a system for overseeing the distribution of humanitarian aid, with sufficient personnel and resources, in order to expedite the process. This mechanism will operate separately from all involved parties and will remain in place for a period of one year.

  • Demands the “immediate and unconditional release of all hostages” providing for their medical needs while still captive and “firmly condemns” all violations of international humanitarian law including indiscriminate attacks against civilians “and all acts of terrorism.”
  • Notes UN facilities are protected under humanitarian law and “rejects forced displacement of the civilian population”. It demands combatants ensure the safety and security of all UN and associated personnel.
  • The Council emphasizes its unwavering dedication to the idea of a two-state solution, highlighting the significance of uniting the West Bank and Gaza under the Palestinian Authority.

12:07 PM

The meeting of the Security Council has ended and ambassadors are now engaging in informal discussions in an effort to reach a common agreement that will result in the approval of a new resolution.

We will continue to keep an eye on the situation throughout the day and will resume our live coverage once there are further updates…

11:54 AM

The current situation in UAE is not sustainable and must be changed.

Mohamed Issa Abushahab, Ambassador and Deputy Permanent Representative of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), started off by noting that as the end of 2023 is approaching, it has already been the deadliest year in the Occupied Palestinian Territory’s history.

The speaker warned that the current state of affairs in Gaza must not be allowed to persist any longer and urgent action is needed.

Ambassador Mohamed Issa Abushahab of the United Arab Emirates addresses the UN Security Council meeting on the situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question.

This photograph was taken by Loey Felipe for the United Nations.

The Ambassador of the United Arab Emirates, Mohamed Issa Abushahab, speaks at the UN Security Council meeting about the current state of the Middle East, specifically addressing the Palestinian issue.

He remembered the recent visit of numerous ambassadors and Security Council members to the Rafah border crossing, where they observed a humanitarian system on the brink of collapse.

“He stated that they witnessed numerous trucks and warehouses filled with aid from individuals and governments across the globe, serving as a tangible display of their support for the people of Gaza.”

“At the same time, in the neighboring area, there are 2.2 million individuals who are confined and 90% of them are going without food for the entire day. The people in Gaza are facing extreme levels of hunger and dehydration, while medical professionals do not even have the most fundamental supplies to care for the injured and prevent the increasing risk of infection. What we require is access,” he stated.

He observed that the resolution, set for voting today, intends to address this requirement by requiring the utilization of all means of land, sea, and air transportation to facilitate the delivery of aid.

He stated that Israel needs to cease obstructing the delivery of aid and permit crucial assistance to enter the Gaza Strip. He also mentioned the opening of the Karam Abu Salem border crossing.

The Ambassador urged authorities to fully open the area, including for commercial cargo, in order to facilitate the delivery of aid on a large scale.

A family cooks in the rubble of their home in the Gaza Strip.

© WFP/Ali Jadallah

A household prepares meals amongst the debris of their residence in the Gaza Strip.

11:36 AM

France believes that inertia is not a viable solution.

Nathalie Estival-Broadhurst, the Deputy Permanent Representative of France, stated that her country will never acknowledge the unlawful annexation of Palestinian Occupied Territories or the legitimization of rogue settlements in the West Bank.

Deputy Permanent Representative Nathalie Broadhurst of France addresses the Security Council meeting on the situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question.

Cannot reword

Nathalie Broadhurst, the Deputy Permanent Representative of France, speaks at the Security Council meeting about the current state of affairs in the Middle East, specifically addressing the issue of Palestine.

She vehemently denounced the recent declaration of additional construction in settlements and displacement of Palestinian families, sanctioned by the Israeli Government.

She claimed that making such decisions puts the potential for a two-State solution at risk. Additionally, she stated that the rise in violence is fueled by a sense of complete immunity in the West Bank.

“We must not tolerate any mistreatment that denies Palestinians their rights and land,” she restated. “It is imperative that we work towards establishing a political plan to enact the two-state solution.”

She emphasized that France firmly supports the people of Israel and denounced the violent gender-based attacks carried out by Hamas on October 7th.

We are urging for a new and immediate humanitarian ceasefire that will result in a lasting end to hostilities. This ceasefire is necessary for the release of all remaining hostages held by Hamas and to ensure that the people of Gaza receive the necessary aid.

She emphasized the pressing need to resume the political process.

“We must make a dedicated effort to establish a state for the Palestinians. The Palestinian Authority plays a crucial role in this endeavor, both in the West Bank and Gaza, which should be included in the Palestinian state. Doing nothing is not a viable solution.”

11:29 AM

“The civilians who are being bombed in Gaza by Russia are also being held hostage in the ongoing conflict.”

According to Vassily Nebenzia, the Ambassador and Permanent Representative of Russia to the UN, the death toll in Gaza has reached over 19,000 people. The majority of these casualties, 70 percent, were women and children. Additionally, over two million people in Gaza have been forced to leave their homes.

Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia of the Russian Federation addresses the UN Security Council meeting on the situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question.

UN Photo/Manuel Elías

Russian Ambassador Vassily Nebenzia speaks at the United Nations Security Council’s meeting regarding the Middle East, specifically addressing the Palestinian issue.

He stated that the individuals affected by the Israeli actions are also included in the Israeli hostages. He also mentioned the complete blockade of the area, disrupted communication with limited internet availability, and strict limitations on humanitarian assistance.

The speaker noted that the Strip is facing a severe lack of water, fuel, and medicines, and that the civic order is close to falling apart. They also mentioned that numerous UN and humanitarian workers have been killed and buildings have been destroyed.

According to reports from the media, it has been stated that Israel has released approximately 29,000 bombs in Gaza, a number that is similar to the amount released by the US and UK during their entire military operation in Iraq in 2003.

On December 16, during the Holy Family celebrations at a church in Jerusalem, the Latin Patriarch informed us of disturbing news. In an unprovoked attack, an Israeli sniper took the lives of two Christians. Witnesses reported that there were no prior warnings given. Additionally, seven people were injured while trying to protect their families.

According to him, an Israeli airstrike also targeted a notable shelter, which was a monastery.

He stated that these assaults persist while everyone is getting ready for the holiday season.

The reports of violence and killings in the West Bank were also addressed by Ambassador Nebenzia.

“Within this particular situation, we want to emphasize that Israel has been carrying out the clearing of the West Bank for quite some time, even prior to October 7th when there was no connection to terrorist threats or security concerns,” stated the speaker.

11:18 AM

China: The only way to prevent more disaster is through a ceasefire.

The Chinese ambassador and Permanent Representative, ZHANG Jun, stated that individuals living in Gaza lack access to essential resources such as water and electricity. Additionally, aid trucks carrying supplies are currently queued up due to stockpiles in Egypt.

Ambassador Zhang Jun of China addresses the Security Council meeting on the situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question.

UN Photo/Loey Felipe

China’s Ambassador Zhang Jun speaks at the Security Council meeting regarding the current state of affairs in the Middle East, specifically addressing the Palestinian issue.

More concerning is the fact that Israel’s unselective bombing has caused the entire assistance system to potentially become inoperable.

The majority of Council members support the UAE’s draft resolution. He emphasized that all countries should support the resolution without hesitation.

He stated that it is important to take a positive approach and described it as an urgent measure to address the situation in Gaza.

In the West Bank, it is crucial for the Council to fulfill its role in promoting fairness and justice, especially as violence and limitations persist.

According to him, a ceasefire is the only way to avoid more civilian deaths, including those of hostages, and to prevent the regional conflict from becoming uncontrollable.

He stated that only a ceasefire can avoid the complete destruction of potential for a political resolution.

11:13 AM

The UK has committed to prohibiting the entry of West Bank settlers who are accountable for acts of violence against Palestinians.

“The Deputy Permanent Representative of the UK, James Kariuki, expressed concern over the worsening humanitarian situation and ongoing suffering of innocent Palestinians.”

Deputy Permanent Representative James Kariuki of the United Kingdom addresses the Security Council meeting on the situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question.

UN Photo/Loey Felipe

James Kariuki, the Deputy Permanent Representative of the United Kingdom, speaks at the Security Council meeting about the current state of affairs in the Middle East, specifically addressing the issue of Palestine.

He stated that Israel is still facing the aftermath of the Hamas terror attacks, as over 130 hostages are still being held captive in Gaza.

There needs to be a lasting cessation of hostilities that interrupts the pattern of aggression. Hamas must cease launching missiles at Israel, all captives must be freed, and assistance must be provided to Gaza.

He stated that this is “the sole method to attain a lasting peace through a two-state resolution, allowing both Israelis and Palestinians to coexist peacefully and securely.”

He stated that the United Kingdom’s main concerns are in three areas: “Firstly, there have been excessive casualties among civilians. Israel must aim for accuracy and specificity in addressing the threat from Hamas.”

Furthermore, he stated that it is imperative to continue efforts towards increasing humanitarian aid into Gaza through various direct means.

He stated that, in light of the growing level of aggression against Palestinians on the West Bank, individuals responsible for settler violence will be prohibited from entering the UK. This measure is aimed at preventing our nation from becoming a haven for those who engage in such intimidating behaviors.

He stated that Israel should take greater measures to hold settlers accountable.

“We once again urge Israel to cease all settlement actions in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem and its Lower Aqueduct,” he stated.

“We understand that these settlements are in violation of international law, impede the path towards peace, and jeopardize the ability to establish a two-state solution. It is crucial that this solution is achieved in order to bring justice and peace to both Palestinians and Israelis.”

11:06 AM


Expressing grave worry for innocent civilians in Mozambique.

Ambassador and Deputy Permanent Representative of Mozambique, Domingos Estêvão Fernandes, called on the global community to persist in advocating for a peaceful and fair solution to the longstanding Middle East conflict.

He expressed serious worries about the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Gaza.

He stated that the ongoing disagreement between Israeli forces and Palestinian armed groups has worsened the situation, causing thousands of individuals to be in dire need.

He emphasized the significance of both parties showing goodwill in the conflict, stating that it is equally crucial.

He emphasized the crucial need for the prompt release of hostages and urged Council members to work together towards a humanitarian pause and de-escalation of the conflict in order to protect lives and uphold human dignity.

11:01 AM

The actions of building settlements in the West Bank are considered a blatant violation by Brazil.

Sérgio França Danese, the Brazilian Ambassador and Permanent Representative to the United Nations, stated that while the world witnesses the devastating effects of the ongoing conflict in Gaza with a sense of shock and helplessness, settlements in the Occupied Palestinian Territory have persisted and grown, blatantly disregarding international laws and defying the authority of the Security Council.

Ambassador Sérgio França Danese of Brazil addresses the Security Council meeting on the situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question.

UN Photo/Loey Felipe

Brazil’s Ambassador Sérgio França Danese speaks at the Security Council meeting regarding the current state of affairs in the Middle East, specifically addressing the Palestinian issue.

He expressed strong concern about the growing number of Palestinians being forced out of their homes due to settlement activities. This situation has been made worse by the October 7th terrorist attacks on Israel and the escalating violence from settlers in the West Bank.

The speaker noted that there has been an increase in instances of state violence in Gaza, as well as incidents such as demolitions, evictions, and other attacks on Palestinian homes and land in East Jerusalem.

10:50 AM

The United States must denounce the attacks carried out by Hamas.

The US ambassador and Deputy Permanent Representative, Robert Wood, stated during the meeting that the actions of Hamas on October 7 must be denounced. He also emphasized that the extremist group should not have control over Gaza in the future.

Deputy Permanent Representative Robert A. Wood of the United States addresses the UN Security Council meeting on the situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question.

UN Photo/Loey Felipe

The United States’ Deputy Permanent Representative, Robert A. Wood, speaks at the UN Security Council meeting about the current state of affairs in the Middle East, specifically addressing the issue of Palestine.

He stated that Israel should have the right to protect its citizens and that measures must be taken to prevent the Houthi rebel group’s assaults on ships in the waters of Yemen.

He informed the Council that everyone must strive for a resolution involving two separate states.

He stated the importance of addressing hateful language and emphasized the need to take action to prevent harmful dehumanization.

During the ongoing conflict in Gaza, he expressed his disapproval of the deaths and injuries suffered by journalists on the frontlines. He stated that urgent action needs to be taken to ensure their safety.

Finally, he stated that he had encountered Israelis whose family members are currently being held captive by Hamas.

He stated that they will persist in telling the tales of each captive until they are safely returned.

He stated that we need to make room for the pain and sorrow experienced by all parties involved.

10:45 AM

UNTSO briefing

The leader of UNTSO, Major General Patrick Gauchat, addressed the Council to provide updates.

He began by acknowledging that due to the absence of UNTSO in Gaza or southern Israel, its staff were unable to directly witness the events of 7 October or subsequent developments.

Nevertheless, he stated that these occurrences have definitely affected our functioning and the dynamics of the region.

“According to him, multiple breaches of the ceasefire have taken place on the ground since October 8, both along the Blue Line separating Israel and Lebanon, and on the Golan Heights between Israel and Syria.”

The Mission explained

On May 29, 1948, the Security Council adopted resolution 50 (1948) which urged for a stop to hostilities in Palestine. It was also decided that the United Nations Mediator would oversee the truce, with support from a team of military observers.

The initial team of military monitors, later recognized as the United Nations Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO), was the inaugural peacekeeping effort formed by the United Nations. They continue to operate in the Middle East to oversee truces, oversee agreements for armistice, prevent isolated events from escalating, and support other United Nations peacekeeping efforts in the area.

Tor Wennesland and Major General Patrick Gauchat provided a briefing to the Security Council through a video conference.

10:33 AM

According to Wennesland, the humanitarian system is in a critical state.

The initial gathering of the Council to address the Israel-Palestine conflict is currently in progress. Tor Wennesland, the United Nations’ Special Envoy for the Middle East Peace Process, has provided an update to Council representatives.

Tor Wennesland (right), UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process, addresses the Security Council meeting on the situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question.

United Nations

The Security Council meeting regarding the Palestinian question and the situation in the Middle East was addressed by Tor Wennesland, the UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process.

He emphasized that the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas in Gaza has made 2023 one of the deadliest years in the history of this conflict, with the situation worsening on all fronts.

He also brought attention to the severe humanitarian crisis in the Gaza Strip.

He stated that providing humanitarian assistance in the Strip remains extremely difficult due to overwhelming obstacles. With widespread displacement and ongoing hostilities, the system for responding to humanitarian needs is on the verge of collapse.

Mr. Wennesland voiced “deep concerns” over escalating tensions in the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem, noting “intensified armed exchanges” between Palestinians and Israeli security forces, predominantly in the context of Israeli operations, have led to exceedingly high levels of fatalities and arrests.

I repeat that security forces should show the utmost self-control and only use lethal force when absolutely necessary to save lives,” he emphasized.

He voiced concern over the deadly assaults committed by Israeli settlers against Palestinians and by Palestinians against Israelis in the occupied West Bank and Israel.

He stated that all individuals responsible for acts of violence must face consequences and be promptly brought to trial.

The UN Special Coordinator expressed shock at the many cases of officials glorifying violence and promoting the murder of innocent civilians.

He stated that the language used is unacceptable and leaders from all perspectives must denounce it. It is the responsibility of leaders to openly condemn acts of terrorism and violence targeting innocent civilians.

10:30 AM

The International Maritime Organization denounces the assault on vessels in the Red Sea.

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) Secretary-General, Kitack Lim, has released a new statement in light of ongoing assaults by Houthi rebels on international vessels near the Red Sea. The rebel group claims these attacks are retaliation for the Israeli military campaign in Gaza.

I denounce the acts of aggression towards global trade in the Red Sea region and reaffirm IMO’s dedication to safeguarding the well-being of seafarers, vessels, and goods. We must prioritize the safety and security of global supply chains by ensuring that international ships are not targeted for attack. It is imperative that ships are able to freely engage in trade globally, in compliance with international maritime regulations.

Several global companies are redirecting commercial shipping as a direct reaction to the current danger. These actions are intended to safeguard sailors and minimize the potential economic consequences on global trade, which heavily relies on shipping.

The International Maritime Organization (IMO) is closely observing any changes and communicating with important groups such as the shipping industry, member states of the IMO, and partners from the United Nations.

The United States announced on Monday evening that it is forming a global protection team to defend the critical trade pathway against missile and drone assaults.

10:25 AM

The scheduled meeting will take place on Tuesday morning, after previous discussions in the Security Council regarding the state of affairs in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) and a separate discussion on the United Nations Truce Supervision Organization (UNTSO), which was first created in 1948.

Since that time, military observers from UNTSO, stationed in Jerusalem, have continued to be present in the Middle East. Their role is to oversee and ensure compliance with ceasefires, oversee agreements for armistices, prevent minor incidents from escalating, and provide support to other UN peacekeeping missions in the area.

Hopes for a fresh start

During the Security Council gathering regarding Gaza, it is anticipated that Members will cast their votes on a proposed resolution put forth by the United Arab Emirates. This resolution expresses worry about the dire and rapidly worsening humanitarian conditions in the area and the serious consequences it has on civilians. It urges for complete, speedy, secure, and unobstructed humanitarian entry into and movement throughout the entirety of the Gaza Strip.

The originally planned Monday afternoon meeting (in New York time) has been delayed, supposedly to allow Council members additional time for negotiations and reaching a compromise.

After several discussions, certain modifications were made, one of which was to urge for immediate action towards halting hostilities. This is a significant alteration from the initial draft on Monday, which called for a complete stop of hostilities.

The proposed resolution acknowledges the reopening of the Karem Abu Salem or Kerem Shalom crossing, which will facilitate the prompt delivery of aid from Israel. It stresses the importance of increasing the scope of aid delivery and distribution.

The text calls for the immediate and unconditional release of all hostages and the provision of humanitarian aid to address their medical needs.

Recent action

The gathering took place shortly after a decision was made by a large majority of 153 Member States in support, with only 10 opposing and 23 abstaining, at the General Assembly meeting held last Tuesday during an urgent special session.

The Assembly called for an “immediate humanitarian ceasefire” and the unconditional release of all hostages, as well as ensuring humanitarian access.

The General Assembly’s resolution was phrased in a similar manner as a draft resolution that was rejected by the United States at the Security Council on December 8th.

Some important factors that are shared are a call for a prompt humanitarian ceasefire, a request for all parties to follow their responsibilities according to international laws, particularly in regards to safeguarding civilians, and a demand for the immediate and unconditional freedom of all hostages, along with guaranteeing humanitarian aid can be provided.