UN General Assembly calls for 'humanitarian truce' in Gaza

UN General Assembly calls for 'humanitarian truce' in Gaza
UN General Assembly has approved a nonbinding resolution on Friday to call for a “humanitarian truce” in Gaza
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The 193-member world body adopted the resolution by a vote of 120-14 with 45 abstentions [Getty]

The UN General Assembly on Friday called by a large majority for an "immediate humanitarian truce" in Gaza, on the 21st day of Israel's ongoing bombardment of the Gaza Strip, as Israeli forces announced it was extending its ground operation into the shattered territory.

The non-binding resolution, criticized by Israel and the United States, received 120 votes in favor, 14 against and 45 abstentions from UN members.

The resolution exposed a division within Western countries, with France voting for the measure; Germany, Italy and Britain abstaining; while Austria and the United States voted against.

The text proposed by Jordan in the name of 22 Arab countries, called for "an immediate, durable and sustained humanitarian truce leading to a cessation of hostilities."

An earlier version called for an "immediate ceasefire."

Israel has bombarded Gaza since Hamas stormed across the border on October 7, that killed 1,400 people, mostly civilians, and kidnapping over 220 others, according to Israeli officials.

The Palestinian health ministry said on Friday that the strikes have since killed 7,326 people, mainly civilians and many of them children.

The resolution co-sponsored by nearly 50 other countries centered largely on the dire humanitarian situation in sealed-off Gaza as Israel presses on with its bombardment.

The document urges "immediate" provision of water, food, medical supplies, fuel and electricity and unhindered access for UN and other humanitarian agencies trying to help the Palestinians.

The draft condemns "all acts of violence aimed at Palestinian and Israeli civilians, including all acts of terrorism and indiscriminate attacks."

This absence was denounced by Israeli UN Ambassador Gilad Erdan, who said Thursday that "the only place this resolution belongs is in the dustbin of history."