FILE - A Palestinian man cries while holding a dead child who was found under the rubble of a destroyed building following Israeli airstrikes in Nusseirat refugee camp, central Gaza Strip on Oct. 31, 2023. In just 25 days of war, more than 3,600 Palestinian children have been killed in Gaza, according to Gaza's Hamas-run Health Ministry. The advocacy group Save The Children says more children were killed in Gaza in October 2023 than in all conflict zones around the world combined in 2022. (AP Photo/Mohammed Dahman, File)
Cook Islands supports the United Nations (UN) resolution for an ‘immediate, durable and sustained humanitarian truce’ between Israeli forces and Hamas militants in Gaza.
The Cook Islands Government
stands firmly with the UN member states that have voted in favour of the
resolution, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Immigration (MFAI) said in a
statement on Tuesday.
The motion put
forward by Jordan at the UN general assembly in New York on Friday was passed
by 120 votes to 14, with 45 countries abstaining.
On Monday, Cook
Islands News asked the Prime Minister’s Office for the country’s stance on the
resolution and its comments on the “no vote” from several Pacific Island
countries that will attend next week’s Pacific Islands Forum Leaders Meeting in
Islands, Federated States of Micronesia (FSM), Papua New Guinea, Nauru and
Tonga voted against a UN resolution while Australia, Kiribati, Palau, Tuvalu
and Vanuatu abstained. Samoa remained silent. New Zealand and Solomon Islands
voted in favour.
MFAI said: “The
Cook Islands expresses deep concern and compassion for those affected by the
ongoing conflict in Israel and Gaza. The armed escalation in response to the
terror attacks on Israeli civilians by Hamas has led to immense suffering;
while we recognise Israel’s right to defend itself, we also urgently call for a
peaceful resolution, with the utmost priority being the well-being and security
of all those impacted by this crisis.”
“The use of
violence and the loss of civilian lives on both sides can never be condoned,
and we call for an immediate, durable, and sustained humanitarian truce that
leads to a cessation of hostilities from all parties involved. The suffering
caused by this conflict is immeasurable, and our unwavering belief is in the
necessity of peace through dialogue.”
MFAI also emphasised
the critical importance of all parties involved in this conflict to fully
comply with international humanitarian law.
“The Cook Islands
remains dedicated to supporting diplomatic initiatives that can provide
humanitarian aid to be delivered to those most affected. We urge all nations
and international organisations, operating within their mandates, to work
tirelessly toward this goal, ensuring that the voices of reason and diplomacy
prevail over violence.
“We join the
international community in our collective desire for a swift resolution and
engagement that respects the dignity and well-being of all individuals affected
by this crisis.”
Benjamin Netanyahu of Israel ruled out a cease-fire in Gaza, dismissed calls
for his resignation and rejected criticism of Israel’s strikes on civilian
homes, The New York Times reported this week.
political opponents have called for him to resign over his failure to stop the
attacks of October 7, when terrorists from Gaza raided Israel and killed more
than 1400 people.
Abroad, the conduct
of the Israeli counterattack on Gaza — which has killed more than 8000 people,
according to the Hamas-run Gazan health ministry — has generated widespread
outcry, with humanitarian groups and the United Nations General Assembly calling
for a cease-fire.
“Just as the United
States would not agree to a cease-fire after the bombing of Pearl Harbour or
after the terrorist attack of 9/11, Israel will not agree to a cessation of
hostilities with Hamas after the horrific attacks of Oct. 7,” Netanyahu said,
adding that “calls for a cease-fire are calls for Israel to surrender to Hamas,
to surrender to terrorism.”