In a crucial session at the United Nations Security Council on Monday, Ghana abstained from voting on a resolution proposed by Russia concerning the conflict in Gaza.
The resolution, tabled by Russia, called for a humanitarian ceasefire, the release of hostages, aid access and the safe evacuation of civilians from the war-torn region.
The Russian-led draft received five votes in favour (China, Gabon, Mozambique, Russia and the United Arab Emirates) out of the Council’s 15 members, and four against (France, Japan, the United Kingdom and the United States).
Notably, Ghana was the sole African country to abstain; Gabon and Mozambique voted in favour. Other abstentions included Albania, Brazil, Ecuador, Ghana, Malta and Switzerland.
For a resolution to be adopted, it requires at least nine affirmative votes, with none of the five permanent members issuing a veto.
Russia’s ambassador to the United Nations, Vassily Nebenzia, expressed regret over the resolution’s failure, attributing it to what he termed the “selfish intention of the Western bloc”.
He emphasised the urgency of addressing the humanitarian crisis in Gaza and urged unified action.
However, the US ambassador, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, criticised the resolution for not addressing Hamas’s actions, arguing that it failed to condemn the group’s terrorist activities.
She stressed the need to hold Hamas accountable for civilian casualties and the dire situation in Gaza.
Riyad Mansour, the permanent observer for the Observer State of Palestine to the United Nations, implored the Security Council to adhere strictly to international law and emphasised the gravity of the situation for Palestinians.
Israel’s ambassador, Gilad Erdan, characterised the moment as pivotal for the Security Council, asserting that Hamas shares an ideology akin to the Nazis. He called on the Council to designate Hamas a terrorist organisation and hold it accountable for the situation in Gaza.