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Senior WHO officials agree: “More is needed.”
Madrid, November 4 (European Press) –
On Friday, the United Nations Assistant Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, Martin Griffiths, stressed the importance of the humanitarian truce in order to meet the “tremendous needs” of the people of Gaza, and expressed his regret that the results reached in the negotiations were “not sufficient.” .
Regarding the much-discussed humanitarian ceasefire, Griffiths said: “Negotiations have to continue but they are not enough. We have to have those pauses.” He stressed that “if we do not stop, we will not be able to meet the needs of the residents of Gaza and the Israelis who are also trapped in those conflict areas.”
The United Nations Director of Humanitarian Affairs explained that the negotiations, “no matter how detailed and important they are, do not succeed. We are not on a par with progress toward ruin, which is the story of Gaza these days.” In this sense, I once again stressed the commitment to respect humanitarian law, which includes the protection of civilians and civilian infrastructure – including humanitarian workers and their facilities – and the unconditional release of all hostages, as well as allowing the entry of essential supplies into Gaza, such as fuel and aid. Humanity.
He stressed that “civilians still have the right to protection whether they stay or move, and they have the right to choose. Anyone who does not evacuate should not automatically be considered a supporter of the adversary or a target of attack.”
Griffiths condemned that “what we have seen over the past 26 days in Israel and in the occupied Palestinian territories is nothing less than a plague on our collective conscience” because “we are all involved in this in some way.”
‘More is needed’
Other senior UN officials agreed on Friday during a news conference in New York that although political negotiations to provide aid to Gaza had produced results, “more is needed, including a humanitarian ceasefire, to ensure the delivery of aid.” “. .
So far, 329 trucks have entered Gaza through the Rafah crossing to deliver aid, according to a UN statement specifying that even before the conflict, an average of 500 trucks were needed.
Along these lines, the United Nations Humanitarian Coordinator for the Middle East, Lyn Hastings, noted that “access to food has become a growing concern” and that “people are braving airstrikes and queuing in front of bakeries to get bread, and some are defying airstrikes.” Which has already been closed due to fuel shortages.
In this case, he stressed the need to accelerate the pace of aid delivery, stressing that a humanitarian ceasefire would not only “alleviate the enormous human suffering” experienced in Gaza, but would also make “humanitarian access easier and safer.”
For his part, Thomas White, Director of the United Nations Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), criticized that “the truth” is that “they cannot even provide security for the civilian population in Gaza.” Under the flag of the United Nations,” echoing Hastings’ words, he stressed that “humanitarian aid is not the only solution, as the public and private sectors in Gaza must also be able to function.”
“We need regular, sustainable humanitarian supplies and access with the public and private sectors,” he said, adding that they wanted a ceasefire “now.”
Problems outside Gaza
On the same Friday, UNRWA Commissioner-General Philippe Lazzarini predicted that this organization “will not be able to function soon unless decisive action is taken now.” He also warned that “hunger, despair and a sense of betrayal in Gaza are turning into anger against the international community, which could be reflected in” problems looming beyond the borders of the Strip.
In this regard, Lazzarini called for an immediate agreement on urgent measures, starting with strict adherence to international humanitarian law, including an immediate humanitarian ceasefire and the continued and safe flow of aid, as requested by other UN agencies.
He added: “Now more than ever, I strongly urge Member States to intensify their efforts, be bold and find concrete solutions to ensure that a stable and predictable UNRWA remains the international community’s greatest asset in the region.” Chronic lack of funding and the need for adequate financial resources.
Next week, aid workers will issue an updated flash appeal for the occupied Palestinian territories. They estimate that $1.2 billion is needed to meet the needs of the entire population of Gaza and 500,000 people in the West Bank by the end of the year.
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