Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the United Nations

Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the United Nations

Explanation of vote by Permanent Representative Vassily Nebenzia after UNSC vote on a US-proposed draft resolution on Gaza


Russia abstained at the vote on a US-proposed draft Security Council resolution endorsing the mediators’ proposal on a ceasefire in Gaza.

From the very beginning of the escalation in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict zone, we have consistently and unwaveringly advocated the imperative of establishing a permanent ceasefire, including for the release of hostages and the normalization of the humanitarian situation in Gaza. We have always viewed positively any diplomatic efforts on the ground aimed at a ceasefire with parameters to be acceptable to both sides.

At the same time, we have a number of questions about the American draft resolution, in which the Council welcomes a certain “deal” whose final contours are still unknown to anyone save the mediators themselves. The information circulating in open sources is quite contradictory. The sponsors have not informed the Security Council of the details of the agreements. We are essentially being offered to buy “a pig in a poke”.

There was no negotiations process as such on the draft resolution. The sponsors offered variations of the final text, in effect demanding that Security Council members sign up to them under time pressure.

Hamas has been called to accept the so-called “deal”. But there is still no clarity as to whether Israel has formally agreed, as stipulated in the resolution, to the “deal” proposed by President Biden, given numerous statements by Israel on continuing the war until Hamas is completely defeated. What exactly did Israel agree to? Perhaps we are going to hear the answer to that question today from the Israeli representative?

We are convinced that the Security Council should not subscribe to agreements with vague parameters, without guarantees of their implementation on the ground, and also without any clear understanding of how the parties feel about them. In essence, the Council is giving carte blanche and endorsing a plan whose details it does not know. The parameters listed in the three paragraphs are not the details. Since the escalation in Gaza began, the Council has already adopted three resolutions whose implementation remains only on paper. This one may become the fourth.

That cannot be called a positive trend. The fact that UNSC adopted a document with a rather questionable content and without a clear demand for an immediate and permanent ceasefire, undermines its authority as the main body for the maintenance of international peace and security.

We did not veto the resolution simply because, as we see, it is supported by the Arab world. That said, all the questions we have identified remain and need to be answered.

Thank you.

Video of the statement