ISRAEL AT WAR - DAY 149

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As UN chief uses rare clause to urge truce, Israeli envoy says he ‘reached a new moral low’

From left, Gilad Erdan, Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations, Antonio Guterres, United Nations Secretary General, and Dani Dayan, chairman of Yad Vashem, browse the Yad Vashem Book of Names of Holocaust Victims Exhibit, January 26, 2023, at United Nations headquarters. (AP Photo/ John Minchillo/ File)
From left, Gilad Erdan, Permanent Representative of Israel to the United Nations, Antonio Guterres, United Nations Secretary General, and Dani Dayan, chairman of Yad Vashem, browse the Yad Vashem Book of Names of Holocaust Victims Exhibit, January 26, 2023, at United Nations headquarters. (AP Photo/ John Minchillo/ File)

Israeli Ambassador to the UN Gilad Erdan castigates UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, calling on him to resign, after Guterres invoked a rare clause and prompted the Security Council to discuss the humanitarian situation in Gaza and call for a ceasefire between Israel and Hamas.

Guterres wrote the letter invoking Article 99 of the UN’s charter, which states that “the secretary-general may bring to the attention of the Security Council any matter which in his opinion may threaten the maintenance of international peace and security.”

It is the first time the UN chief has invoked the article since taking office in 2017, and the first time any secretary-general has made use of it since 1989.

“Today, the Secretary-General has reached a new moral low,” writes Erdan in a tweet. “The Secretary-General decided to activate this rare clause only when it allows him to put pressure on Israel, which is fighting the Nazi Hamas terrorists. This is more proof of the Secretary-General’s moral distortion and his bias against Israel.

“The Secretary-General’s call for a ceasefire is actually a call to keep Hamas’s reign of terror in Gaza. Instead of the Secretary-General explicitly pointing to Hamas’s responsibility for the situation and calling on the terrorist leaders to turn themselves in and return the hostages, thus ending the war, the Secretary-General chooses to continue playing into Hamas’ hands,” Erdan says.

“I again call on the Secretary-General to resign immediately — the UN needs a Secretary-General who supports the war on terror, not a Secretary-General who acts according to the script written by Hamas.”

AFP contributed to this report.

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