Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield
U.S. Representative to the United Nations
New York, New York
May 20, 2021
Good evening. President Biden just addressed the nation, where he announced that Israel has agreed to a mutual, unconditional ceasefire, and that the Egyptians have informed us that Hamas, and other groups in Gaza, have also agreed. As I said earlier today, the United States has approached the crisis in Israel and Gaza with a singular focus: bringing an end to the conflict as quickly as possible.
The announcement of today’s ceasefire – if it holds – brings us one step closer to that goal. Now, we must turn our focus toward making more tangible progress toward a durable peace. And we must work together to address the urgent humanitarian needs on the ground, which are especially – in fact significantly – immense in Gaza.
In all of our efforts – past and present – we’ve been guided by a resolve to work multilaterally, diplomatically, and also strategically. We are committed to working with other members of the international community over the long term to create the conditions for a lasting and sustainable peace.
As President Biden said tonight, we will be working with the UN and UN bodies to provide urgent humanitarian assistance to the people of the region, and we will be asking for other nations to step up their contributions, as well. And as we have repeatedly said, Israelis and Palestinians deserve safety and security, and should enjoy equal measures of freedom, security, prosperity, and democracy. And we will continue to work relentlessly in pursuit of that goal.