US vetoes UN Security Council ceasefire resolution

Amnesty supporters hold signs that spell out "ceasefire now!"

Israel/OPT: US veto of ceasefire resolution displays callous disregard for civilian suffering in face of staggering death toll


8 December 2023

Reacting to the United States (US) veto of a UN Security Council draft resolution calling for an immediate ceasefire in the Occupied Palestinian Territories and Israel, Agnès Callamard, Amnesty International’s Secretary General, said:

“By vetoing this resolution, the US has displayed a callous disregard for civilian suffering in the face of a staggering death toll, extensive destruction and an unprecedented humanitarian catastrophe happening in the occupied Gaza Strip.

“The US has brazenly wielded and weaponized its veto to strongarm the UN Security Council, further undermining its credibility and ability to live up to its mandate to maintain international peace and security.

“There can be no justification for continuing to block meaningful action by the UN Security Council to stop massive civilian bloodshed. The use of the veto is morally indefensible and a dereliction of the US duty to prevent atrocity crimes and uphold international law.

“On top of blocking the adoption of a ceasefire that would end mass humanitarian suffering in Gaza, aid the return of hostages, and calm tension multiplying in the region, the US continues to transfer US-made munitions to the government of Israel that contribute to the decimation of entire families.

“As the only state to veto, it’s clear the US stands isolated from much of world, and a large portion of its own population. It is displaying a complete absence of global leadership and failing to understand the historical significance of the moment.

“The US purports to champion a rules-based international order, however its brazen double standards and disregard for international law has repercussions that extend well beyond the horrific catastrophe in Gaza, weakening the already enfeebled international system for protecting civilians in conflict.

“As a movement of over 10 million people, we urge everyone across the world to act now and press their governments to show that international law exists to protect everyone by ending this carnage via an enduring ceasefire. Restoring humanity is a pre-requisite to lay the foundation for a future grounded in the rights of all, and end to apartheid, and justice and reparation for victims.”


All members of the Security Council voted in favour of the draft resolution, with the exception of the United States, which voted against, and the United Kingdom, which abstained.