"This resolution makes no mentions of the actions of Hamas, which makes no effort to better the lives of the Palestinian people and in fact served to make such improvements impossible due to Hamas' ongoing commitment to the destruction of the State of Israel. At the very least, ECOSOC should hold Hamas accountable for keeping prisoners. The United States once again calls on Hamas to return the Israeli Defense Forces soldiers, Hadar Goldin and Oron Shaul, as well as Israeli civilians Avraham Mengistu and Hisham al-Sayed, to their families immediately...
The United States is disappointed yet again at the presentation of a one-sided and biased resolution, which we cannot support. We remain very concerned about the decidedly anti-Israel bias that still exists within the United Nations' Economic and Social Commission for West Asia. This prejudice is evident in this resolution, as well as in the accompanying report and its recommendations, which do nothing to advance the aspirations of the Palestinians and Israelis for a more secure peaceful and prosperous future together.
The resolution and the report are unbalanced, and unfairly single out Israel in a forum that is not intended to be politicized. This document only serves to inflame both sides of the conflict and complicate our shared goal of advancing Israeli and Palestinian peace.
The United States shares with many members of the international community the same goal of a lasting and comprehensive peace between Israel and the Palestinians. We believe a comprehensive agreement that ends the conflict can only be achieved through direct bilateral negotiations. Resolutions and reports – and frankly proceedings like these today – in ECOSOC are so consistently biased and counterproductive that they have no place in our discourse and only serve to delay the day in which we can celebrate peaceful co-existence between Israel and the Palestinians. Billions of dollars have been invested in Gaza over the past 70 years, yet as the report notes, still over half of the population lives below the poverty line. Instead of blaming Israel in resolution after resolution at the UN, perhaps ESCWA should be looking at the primary culprit: Hamas. Hamas must acknowledge that the existence of Israel is a permanent reality, and that the Palestinian Authority is the legitimate governing body in the Gaza strip. Hamas should stop diverting funds intended for infrastructure to purchasing weapons or other nefarious uses and instead work towards peace and the prosperity of its own citizens rather than nursing their sense of grievance and victimhood. The United States stands ready to help promote economic security. The United States will work with all parties to improve conditions and promote the cause of peace, but resolutions such as this do nothing to advance that goal. We have no choice but to vote against this resolution."