Antonio Guterres calls for immediate release of hostages, says two-state solution only path to sustainable peace * Biden ‘heartbroken’ over killing of US-Israeli hostage in Gaza
UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres says “nothing can possibly justify the horrific terror attacks launched by Hamas on 7 October, or the brutal abduction of some 250 hostages.”
In a post on X, Guterres says he repeats his “call for all remaining hostages to be released immediately and unconditionally.”
The post follows the passage of a UN Security Council resolution that calls to immediately speed up the aid delivery into Gaza while also “creating the conditions” for an end to the Israel-Hamas war, sparked by the terror group’s October 7 attacks in which thousands of terrorists indeed Israel by land, sea, and air, and killed 12,00 people, mostly civilians, and took about 240 hostages.
“As difficult as it might appear today, the two-state solution – in line with UN resolutions, international law and previous agreements – is the only path to sustainable peace,” he wrote in an earlier post. “Any suggestion otherwise denies human rights, dignity and hope to the Palestinian people.”
Guterres this week watched the IDF’s 47-minute documentary of Hamas atrocities from October 7 in a private screening at UN headquarters, after considerable pressure from Israeli officials, Channel 12 reported on Tuesday. Guterres had not attended previous screenings organized by Israeli officials at the UN, citing scheduling difficulties.
The footage includes harrowing scenes of murder, torture and decapitation from the Hamas slaughter in southern Israel, including raw videos from the terrorists’ bodycams.
According to Israel’s Ambassador to the UN Gilad Erdan, Guterres said after watching the footage that the Hamas onslaught was “humanity at its worst.”
Guterres has faced significant backlash from Israeli officials since the outbreak of war due to comments that have been interpreted by some as anti-Israel and pro-Hamas.
In October, the UN chief appeared to suggest that the impetus for the devastating Hamas assault was the Jewish state’s control of Palestinian territories, despite Israel having unilaterally withdrawn from Gaza in 2005.
“It is important to also recognize the attacks by Hamas did not happen in a vacuum,” Guterres said, prompting both Erdan and Foreign Minister Eli Cohen to call for his resignation.
More recently, Cohen accused Guterres of supporting Hamas and again called for his resignation after the UN chief wrote a letter pressing for a ceasefire in the war between Israel and Hamas. Cohen also condemned Guterres’s decision to invoke a rare clause in the UN charter to urge Security Council intervention.
On December 9, the US vetoed a Security Council resolution backed by almost all council members and dozens of other nations demanding an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza. US Deputy Ambassador Robert Wood criticized the council after the vote for its failure to condemn Hamas’s Oct. 7 massacres in Israel, or to acknowledge Israel’s right to defend itself.
In another post on X today, Guterres says that since the outbreak of war on October 7 “136 of our colleagues [at UN agencies] in Gaza have been killed in 75 days – something we have never seen in
“Most of our staff have been forced from their homes. I pay tribute to them & the thousands of aid workers risking their lives as they support civilians in Gaza,’ he writes.
Source: The Times of Israel