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UNITED NATIONS: The United Nations Security Council on Monday (Mar 25) demanded an immediate ceasefire between Israel and Palestinian militants Hamas and the immediate and unconditional release of all hostages after the United States abstained from the vote.

The remaining 14 council members voted for the resolution, which was proposed by the 10 elected members of the body.

"The Palestinian people has suffered greatly. This bloodbath has continued for far too long. It is our obligation to put an end to this bloodbath, before it is too late," Algeria's UN Ambassador Amar Bendjama told the council after the vote.

Israeli army radio reported shortly before the council meeting started that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu would cancel a planned delegation to Washington if the US did not veto the resolution.

https://www.channelnewsasia.com/world/un-security-council-demands-immediate-gaza-ceasefire-first-time-us-abstains-4220456

Is there any legal consequence that can come from Israel not abiding by the latest UN resolution? My question is whether the latest resolution would leave Israel open to sanctions from the West, because to me UN resolutions are not legally binding.

The resolution passed earlier today by the UN Security Council is not legally binding, the US asserts.

“It’s a non-binding resolution, so there’s no impact at all on Israel’s ability to continue to go after Hamas,” White House National Security Council John Kirby says in a press briefing, echoing a stance made after the vote by US Ambassador to the UN Linda Thomas-Greenfield.

The position appears to be shared by South Korea and other members as well.

https://www.timesofisrael.com/liveblog_entry/us-says-ceasefire-resolution-non-binding-less-influential-security-council-members-object/

It seems to me at least that the U.S. won't sanction Israel even if it doesn't abide by the resolution, but I am wondering if the EU thinks that all UN resolutions are not legally binding.

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    near duplicate of previous Q by 'gods from engineering'
    – Pete W
    Mar 26 at 0:35
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    In fact Biden administration issued a national security memorandum requiring military aid recipients to comply with international law whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/presidential-actions/2024/02/08/… ... and Israel gave its assurances of compliance, which the US State Dept now has to accept as credible... washingtonpost.com/national-security/2024/03/22/… ...
    – Pete W
    Mar 26 at 0:39
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    I would fall over in shock, however, if US cuts off military aid to Istael
    – Pete W
    Mar 26 at 0:41
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    @PeteW: Israel ignored some UNSC resolutions for decades. Mar 26 at 2:45
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    @PeteW Okay. Maybe the question could make this more explicitly clear. As written it seems to me to mostly ask for a legal opinion indicated by phrases as "legal consequence" or "are legally binding". Mar 26 at 22:01

1 Answer 1

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It may just have some impact on Israel's international reputation.

Although Israel has been subject to several United Nations Security Council resolutions over the years.

United Nations Security Council Resolution 242 This resolution was adopted after the Six-Day War in 1967 and called for the withdrawal of Israeli armed forces from territories occupied during the conflict, including the West Bank, Gaza Strip, East Jerusalem, and the Golan Heights. Israel retained control over these territories and did not fully comply with the resolution's requirements.

Resolution 338 (1973): This resolution called for an immediate ceasefire and negotiations between the involved parties in the Yom Kippur War. It reiterated the call for the implementation of Resolution 242. While Israel accepted the resolution, it did not fully comply with the withdrawal provisions outlined in Resolution 242.

Resolution 446 (1979): This resolution declared Israel's establishment of settlements in the occupied territories as illegal and called upon Israel to cease settlement activities. Israel has continued to expand its settlements in the West Bank, which has been a point of contention and criticized by the international community.

Resolution 478 (1980): This resolution condemned Israel's enactment of the "Basic Law" declaring Jerusalem as its united capital. It called upon member states to withdraw their diplomatic missions from Jerusalem. Israel has not complied with this resolution and continues to consider Jerusalem as its capital.

Resolution 2334 (2016): This resolution reaffirmed the illegality of Israeli settlements in the occupied territories, including East Jerusalem, and called for a cessation of settlement activities. Israel rejected the resolution and continued its settlement expansion.

refer to:

List of United Nations resolutions concerning Israel

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    UNSCR 242 specifically did not require Israel to withdraw from every bit of land occupied in the 1967 war. But it did require all parties in the region to "acknowledgment of the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of every State in the area and their right to live in peace within secure and recognized boundaries free from threats or acts of force." "every state in the area" include Israel, doesn't it? Has Hamas recognized Israel's right to exist? Does Hamas allow Israelis to live in peace "free from threats or acts of force"?
    – Just Me
    Mar 26 at 12:49
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    chicagounbound.uchicago.edu/cjil/vol16/iss1/6 "The new evidence presented here supports the view that Resolution 242 contemplates only a partial Israeli withdrawal."
    – Just Me
    Mar 26 at 12:52
  • Evidence presented by Israel will support its claims. Evidence by Palestine is going to support their claims. Nothing all that new about that. Thing is, it's not as if Israel has withdrawn from most territories, left Palestinians to enjoy the rest and is arguing to keep a few pieces. It's occupied all of the West Bank and Gazans have lived a miserable life for decades. Sure, Hamas - a terrorist dictatorship - deserves a lot of blame (and worse). But Israel is far from being above reproach, esp wrt the settlements. Mar 27 at 1:21

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