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Philippines supports UN resolution demanding ceasefire in Gaza

MANILA, Philippines, December 14 ------ The Philippines has voted in favor of a United Nations General Assembly resolution demanding a ceasefire in the Gaza Strip, marking a shift from the country’s earlier decision to abstain. The UN General Assembly overwhelmingly passed a non-binding resolution Tuesday, demanding an “immediate humanitarian ceasefire” in Gaza, with 153 countries voting in favor and 23 abstaining. Ten countries, including the United States and Israel, voted against the resolution.  


The resolution also calls for the protection of civilians, humanitarian access, and the "immediate and unconditional" release of all hostages. Ambassador Antonio Lagdameo, the country’s permanent representative to the UN, said the Philippines is “deeply concerned” about the humanitarian situation in the Palestinian territory. “The Philippines believes that a humanitarian ceasefire is crucial to halt the loss of life and suffering. This ceasefire is a necessary step to facilitate the delivery of urgent humanitarian aid to all affected civilians, irrespective of their affiliation,” he said in a speech.  


Lagdameo said that while the Philippines condemns the October 7 attacks perpetrated by Hamas fighters on Israel, it emphasizes the need to adhere to International Humanitarian Law, especially the principles of proportionality and distinction in response to security threats. “It is imperative that any military action considers the impact on civilians and strives to minimize, if not eliminate, collateral damage,” he said.  


The Philippine representative urged parties to adhere to their obligations under international law such as protecting civilians, particularly women and children. In October, the Philippines abstained from a UN resolution calling for an “immediate, durable and sustainable humanitarian truce” between Israel and Palestinian militant group Hamas. Lagdameo said at the time that the resolution did not mention nor condemn the October 7 assault that led to deaths of civilians, including Filipinos. Tuesday’s vote came after the UN Security Council—the body responsible for global peace and security—has repeatedly failed to make such a call. 


Israeli air and land assaults continue to pummel Gaza, killing more than 18,400 Palestinians. Meanwhile, some 1,200 Israelis were killed in the attack.   




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