Guterres calls to stop escalation in Rafah due to humanitarian impact • Workers

Guterres calls to stop escalation in Rafah due to humanitarian impact • Workers
Guterres calls to stop escalation in Rafah due to humanitarian impact • Workers

The Secretary General of the UN, António Guterres, called this Tuesday to stop the military escalation in Rafah and its surroundings, warning of its impact on humanitarian access in that southern Gaza governorate.

Photo: PL

In a statement released by his spokesman, the head of the United Nations demanded that Israel and the Hamas group respect civilians and protect them at all times.

Guterres called for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire and the release of all hostages while calling for the immediate opening of the Rafah crossing for unhindered humanitarian access throughout Gaza.

His statements coincide with the alert from humanitarian agencies on the ground about the continued displacement in that border area with Egypt after the Israeli authorities ordered the evacuation of the area.

This Tuesday, the United Nations Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) said that nearly 450,000 people left the governorate in the last week “fleeing wherever they can, including to the rubble and sand dunes.”

“As we have repeatedly said, all parties must respect international humanitarian law at all times,” said Farhan Haq, Guterres’ deputy spokesperson, insisting on calls to meet their essential needs, including food, shelter, water and health.

“Displaced families from Rafah are arriving in places that lack shelter, latrines and water points; However, it is impossible to improve the situation in displacement sites if supplies cannot enter Gaza and if we lack the fuel to transport them within Gaza to the families who need them,” he added.

The spokesperson assured that efforts are continuing to recover facilities and provide support despite the obstacles.

At the same time, he demanded that Israel protect the entry of supplies after attacks by settlers from that country against trucks traveling to Gaza on Monday in the West Bank. According to Haq, settlers unloaded and vandalized vehicles at the Tarqumiya checkpoint and near the Beit ‘Awwa barrier in an incident that left several vehicles damaged.

“Israel must protect against Israeli settler violence and ensure that all allegations of settler violence are investigated and that perpetrators are prosecuted,” he claimed.

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