PH abstains from UN resolution calling for humanitarian truce in Gaza
MANILA, Philippines — The Philippines on Saturday abstained from voting in the United Nations (UN) General Assembly resolution calling for a humanitarian truce in Gaza as it “does not mention nor condemn the terrorist attack” of Hamas on Oct. 7.
The Philippines Permanent Representative to the UN, Ambassador Antonio Lagdameo, said that then Philippines was deeply concerned with the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas and it condemned Hamas’ Oct. 7 attacks that killed many lives, including Filipinos.
“The ongoing conflict deeply concerns us, with its broad and profound impact on countless innocent civilians, including Filipino nationals and their families,” Lagdameo said in his statement in the 10th Emergency Special Session of the UN General Assembly.
“We call for the end of the taking and detainment of individuals, particularly women and children. We reiterate our plea to the international community to come together and provide essential humanitarian aid and support to the affected,” he added.
In a statement issued on Saturday, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) further recalled that it had issued a number of statements addressing the conflict.
The DFA cited the country’s joint statement with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations and the Gulf Cooperation Council on Oct. 20 wherein they condemned attacks against civilians and called for a ceasefire. They also urged for humanitarian aid for Gaza.
On Oct. 24, they also issued a similar statement, condemning the attacks and recognizing Israel’s right to self-defense.
According to Lagdameo, the Philippines supported many elements of the resolution. However, his delegation still chose to abstain from voting for it as it did not mention nor condemn Hamas’ attacks.
“However, as we would condemn all terrorist attacks, the resolution does not mention nor condemn the terrorist attack of 7 October by Hamas leading to the deaths of innocent civilians, including women and children, as well as Filipinos,” Lagdameo said.
“Therefore, despite commendable efforts of the co-sponsors to improve the original text, for these reasons, my delegation abstained on the resolution,” he said.
The DFA said that the country backed the efforts of Canada to include a factual mention of the Oct. 7 attacks in the resolution. But it sought more balance in the draft, which was not reflected in the resolution as it lacked votes to be included there.
“We supported the efforts of Canada to include a factual mention in the resolution of the attacks on 07 October, in which Filipinos were killed.” the DFA said.
The DFA said the country would continue to support the efforts of the UN, particularly its Security Council, the UN its humanitarian system, and the global community in addressing the crisis to stop the alarming deaths and sufferings in Gaza and Israel.
With 45 abstentions, 14 against, and 120 in favor, the UN General Assembly adopted the Gaza resolution calling for an immediate and sustained truce.