UN calls for immediate ceasefire as Gaza toll tops 500
The Council met late Sunday at the request of Jordan to discuss the ongoing offensive led by the Tel Aviv regime in the besieged enclave, which has killed more than 505 Palestinians over the past two weeks.
“The members of the Security Council expressed serious concern about the growing number of casualties. The members of the Security Council called for an immediate cessation of hostilities,” said Rwanda’s UN envoy Eugene Gasana, whose country is the acting president of the Council.
The Council also urged respect for international humanitarian law including protection of civilians, Gasana said, noting, “The members of the Security Council emphasized the need to improve the humanitarian situation, including through humanitarian pauses.”
Palestinian envoy to the UN Riyad Mansour, meanwhile, said he was disappointed by the Security Council’s statement, saying, “We were hoping for the Security Council to adopt a resolution to condemn the aggression against our people.”
Israel began airstrikes on the besieged enclave on July 8. Last Thursday, thousands of Israeli soldiers launched a ground invasion into the densely-populated strip as well.
UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, who is touring the Middle East to help broker a truce, condemned Israel’s massacre of Palestinians in Shejaia as an “atrocious action” and called for an end to the conflict.