Posted January. 10, 2009 06:54,
The United Nations Security Council has adopted a resolution Thursday urging an "immediate, durable" ceasefire leading to the full withdrawal of Israeli forces from the Gaza Strip.
Despite the abstention of the United States, the council voted 14-0 in favor of the resolution. Washington said it fully supports the resolution, but will keep watching the outcome of the truce negotiations between Israel and Hamas taking place in Egypt.
The text calls for the unimpeded provision and distribution throughout Gaza of humanitarian assistance, including of food, fuel and medical treatment. It also demands U.N. member countries to make efforts to help stop the war in Gaza by opening borders and preventing weapons smuggling.
The resolution will likely significantly affect Hamas leaders decisions since it was put forward after three days of discussions among the United States, the United Kingdom, France and Middle Eastern countries.
Hamas did not send its delegate to the armistice negotiations Thursday in Cairo, Egypt, resulting in a delayed dialogue. The Jerusalem Post also said Israeli government leaders are split over whether to accept the ceasefire.
The death toll in Gaza reached 778 as Israel continued its air strikes even after the passage of the U.N. resolution on Friday, according to AFP.