Statement by H.E. Ambassador ISHIKANE Kimihiro, Permanent Representative of Japan to the United Nations, United Nations Security Council, EoV after the vote for Gaza Humanitarian Resolution

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December 8, 2023

Thank you for giving me the floor.

More than two months have passed since the Hamas terror attack against Israel on 7 October followed by Israel’s massive military response. After several failed attempts, this Council finally spoke on 15 November by adopting Resolution 2712.

Since then, a hopeful weeklong humanitarian pause in fighting allowed more emergency aid to enter through the Rafah crossing, and for more than 100 hostages to be released. However, after this pause broke down, the situation rapidly deteriorated with a new round of death, displacement, and destruction. It is clear more needs to be done.

We voted in favor of this draft resolution as the loss of all civilian life, whether Palestinian or Israeli, is tragic. Under the current situation, Japan also takes very seriously the Secretary General’s invocation of Article 99.

Japan therefore regrets that this resolution has failed to be adopted. We need to recall, however, that the country that vetoed is engaging in enormous diplomatic efforts to make a tangible difference in improving the humanitarian situation on the ground. That is why we need more joint efforts, unceasing efforts to find common ground where the Council can work together for the people of Palestine as well as those in Israel and beyond, rather than indulging in finger-pointing.

Mr. President,

Though this is a disappointing outcome, Japan will work constructively with other Council members to find a path forward.

Thank you.

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