Photo: Israeli Ambassador Gilad Erdan speaks during the U.N. General Assembly debate in New York on the Israeli-Hamas war, Dec. 12, 2023. Source: X.

( JNS)

The United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) passed a resolution on Tuesday, Dec. 12, calling for an immediate ceasefire in the war between Israel and Hamas. Out of the 193 members of the world body, 153 voted in favor of the measure, which is not legally binding. The United States joined Israel and eight other countries in opposing the resolution. There were 23 abstentions. Also voting against the resolution were Austria, Czechia, Guatemala, Liberia, Micronesia, Nauru, Papua New Guinea and Paraguay.

The resolution includes similar language to a U.N. Security Council resolution that failed to pass on Dec. 8 due to a U.S. veto.

It makes no mention of Hamas or the Oct. 7 massacre that triggered the war.

A draft proposal rejected by the UNGA would have included a paragraph stating that it “unequivocally rejects and condemns the heinous terrorist attacks by Hamas.” Another rejected resolution, introduced by Austria, would have added a demand for the immediate release of hostages held by Hamas.

During the General Assembly meeting ahead of the vote, Israel’s U.N. Ambassador Gilad Erdan held up a sign with the phone number of the Hamas offices in Gaza and asked members to call terrorist leader Yahya Sinwar if they wanted the fighting to stop.

“If you want a real ceasefire, call the Hamas offices in Gaza and ask for Yahya Sinwar. Tell him that when Hamas lays down its weapons, turns itself in and returns all the hostages, then there will be a real ceasefire that will last forever,” said Erdan.

“No piece of paper, especially one that is adopted by a biased, politicized majority, will prevent Israel from defending itself against those who seek our destruction. Israel is fighting a war for her future. There is not a single member state here that would act differently in a similar situation,” he continued.