President George Weah Shifts Liberia’s Stance, Withdrawing Support for Israel in Gaza Ceasefire Vote

President George Weah
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In a pivotal moment at the United Nations General Assembly, a resolution calling for a humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza elicited a variety of responses from member nations, with Liberia initially aligning itself with a minority viewpoint. The West African nation, diverging from its African counterparts, initially cast a vote against the ceasefire. This decision, unique among African nations, quickly garnered international attention and debate.

However, this stance was not to remain static. In a surprising turn of events, Liberian President George Weah intervened, leading to a complete reversal of the country’s position. This move not only altered Liberia’s stand on the Gaza ceasefire but also highlighted the dynamic and often unpredictable nature of international diplomacy. The implications of this shift are far-reaching, touching on aspects of foreign policy, regional solidarity, and Liberia’s role on the global stage.

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Liberia’s Initial Vote Against the Ceasefire

At the heart of this diplomatic episode was Liberia’s initial vote against the proposed ceasefire in the Gaza Strip. This decision positioned Liberia as the sole African nation among a small group of countries opposing the resolution. The vote, held on December 12, 2023, was more than a mere checkbox in the annals of U.N. voting records; it was a statement, one that rippled across diplomatic circles and sparked conversations about Liberia’s foreign policy direction.

Out of the 54 African countries, only Liberia voted against the resolution, which aimed to bring an end to the violence in Gaza. The 10 countries who voted against this resolution included Austria, Czech Republic, Guatemala, Israel, Liberia, Micronesia, Nauru, Papua New Guinea, Paraguay and the United States.

President George Weah

Interestingly, the majority of African countries, including well-known nations like South Africa, Nigeria, Kenya, and Egypt, voted in favor of the ceasefire while 5 African countries (Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea, Malawi, South Sudan and Togo) abstained.

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The reasons behind Liberia’s initial ‘no’ vote are layered and complex. While some speculated about strategic alliances and political calculations, others pointed to possible internal pressures or geopolitical considerations. However, without concrete statements from key decision-makers, the international community could only conjecture about the motivations behind this unexpected vote.

President George Weah’s Intervention

President George Weah
Liberia President George Weah

The narrative took an unexpected turn with the intervention of President George Weah. In a decisive move, President Weah overturned Liberia’s original vote, aligning the country with the majority in supporting the ceasefire. This reversal, swift and resolute, marked a significant shift in Liberia’s stance, underscoring the influence of presidential leadership in the realm of foreign affairs.

A statement from the Liberian Information Ministry clarified this change: “Following guidance from the Foreign Ministry, Liberia’s earlier vote against the ceasefire has been reversed. We’ve effectively communicated our new stance, supporting the ceasefire in Gaza, through the proper channels at the UNGA [United Nations General Assembly].”

It was also revealed that the initial vote opposing the ceasefire was cast without the sanction of President Weah. The Information Ministry emphasized President Weah’s commitment to peace, referring to his consistent advocacy for it. This commitment was notably reflected in a recent correspondence where President Weah reached out to Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. In his letter, President Weah made a compelling call for restraint and a focus on the plight of civilians caught in the crisis.

“It is vital that all parties involved in the Israeli-Hamas conflict prioritize the protection of innocent lives and create a conducive environment for a diplomatic resolution,” President Weah stated.

Global Perspective on the Gaza Ceasefire Vote

The U.N. General Assembly’s vote on the Gaza ceasefire was a moment of global significance, shedding light on the international community’s stance towards the Israel-Hamas conflict. The overwhelming support for the ceasefire, with Liberia eventually joining the majority, illustrated a strong global consensus for seeking a peaceful resolution.

The context of this vote is critical. It came in the wake of the United States’ veto of a similar resolution in the Security Council, a move that highlighted a divergent approach by two of the world’s most influential players, the U.S. and Israel. This veto and the subsequent General Assembly vote revealed a complex web of international relations, where global alliances, strategic interests, and diplomatic strategies converge.


The episode of Liberia’s vote on the Gaza ceasefire is a microcosm of the complexities inherent in international diplomacy. It illustrates how national decisions on global platforms can have far-reaching implications, shaping a country’s international relationships and its role in the world. Liberia’s journey from dissent to support in this resolution reflects the fluid nature of diplomacy, where decisions are continually reassessed in light of changing circumstances and global perspectives.

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