UN Chief Urges Urgent Gaza Ceasefire Amid Humanitarian Crisis

Antonio Guterres Appeals for Truce to Alleviate Suffering and Aid Delivery

The UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has appealed for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza, where Israel and Hamas have been locked in a deadly conflict since October 7. On Tuesday, Guterres told the UN Security Council that a truce would help release the hostages, deliver aid, and ease the people’s suffering.

Guterres said he was deeply concerned about the violations of international humanitarian law in Gaza, where Israeli airstrikes have killed thousands of civilians and damaged vital infrastructure. He said no party to an armed conflict was above the law and urged Israel to respect the principles of proportionality and distinction.

He also said that Gaza faced a severe humanitarian crisis, with limited access to food, water, electricity, and fuel. He said that the UN had sent 54 trucks of aid into Gaza through the Rafah crossing from Egypt since Saturday, but more was needed to meet the needs of the 2.2 million population. He warned that the UN fuel supplies would run out in days, causing another disaster.

He said that to end the epic suffering, make the delivery of aid more accessible and safer, and facilitate the release of hostages, he reiterated his appeal for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire.

The US and Israel have previously rejected calls for a ceasefire, saying they wanted to continue their military operations against Hamas, which launched a surprise attack on Israel on October 7, killing more than 1,400 people and taking more than 200 hostages.

Israel has also dropped leaflets on Gaza, asking for information about hostages in exchange for a reward. The leaflets said the Israeli military would provide security and confidentiality for those who shared verified and valuable details on hostages in their area.

The leaflets also asked Gazans to move to the southern part of Gaza amid Israeli military operations against Hamas.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has issued dire warnings about the health situation in Gaza, where 46 out of 72 healthcare facilities have left operation due to lack of electricity, fuel and Israeli airstrikes. The WHO regional director Rick Brennan said that Gazans had only 3 liters of water per person daily and were at risk of waterborne diseases.

Meanwhile, two more hostages have been transported out of Gaza with the help of Egypt and Qatar. The US has welcomed the release of two American hostages on Friday. French President Emmanuel Macron has met with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Isaac Herzog in Jerusalem to discuss the crisis. One of the freed hostages has recounted her experience after “going through hell” in captivity.

Alok Verma

Alok Verma is an accomplished International Reporter at IndiaFocus with a deep-seated passion for global affairs and cross-border stories. With an impressive track record in international journalism, Alok is dedicated… More »

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