Tag: <span>Human Catastrophe</span>

Rafah Appeals

Rafah, Gaza Strip: A Human Catastrophe in the Making.

“I am disturbed and distressed by the renewed military activity in Rafah by the Israeli Defense Forces. Make no mistake – a full-scale assault on Rafah would be a human catastrophe,”

(UN) Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.

United Nations (UN) Secretary-General Antonio Guterres told reporters on May 7, 2024. The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs reported that more than 35,000 Palestinians have been killed in the Gaza Strip, some 78,000 have suffered injuries, and nearly 2 million have been internally displaced. The number is rising as the ground invasion of Rafah begins.

The UN Human Rights Council Special Rapporteurs have painted a grim picture of the disproportionate level of suffering experienced by girls and especially pregnant women in Gaza.

United Nations (UN) Secretary-General Antonio Guterres. By Quirinale.it, Attribution, via Wikimedia Commons.
United Nations (UN) Secretary-General Antonio Guterres. By Quirinale.it, Attribution, via Wikimedia Commons.

“The treatment of pregnant and lactating women continues to be appalling with the direct bombardment of hospitals and the deliberate denial of access to health care facilities by Israeli snipers, combined with the lack of beds and medical resources placing an estimated 50,000 pregnant Palestinian women and 20,000 newborn babies at unimaginable risk.”

Many of these military actions are in direct violation of International Humanitarian Law as set out in the Geneva Conventions of August 12, 1949 and the Protocol Additional adopted in 1977. In order to meet new situations, International Humanitarian Law (IHL) has evolved to cover not only international armed conflicts but also internal armed conflicts. IHL prohibits the indiscriminate killing of civilians, the holding of hostages, and the destruction of medical and educational infrastructure.

The Association of World Citizens stresses the importance of IHL as a vital part of world law that will replace unilateral actions by States based on narrow domestic political considerations. The standards of IHL require political will if they are to function effectively. Thus, nongovernmental action on the Gaza Strip armed conflict is urgently needed.

Prof. René Wadlow is President of the Association of World Citizens.

A Palestinian refugee Camp near Tyre, Lebanon. Photo shows: IDF aroured troops inside Lebanon stationering near by a camp for Palestinians refugees. By Dan Hadani / Dan Hadani collection / National Library of Israel / The Pritzker Family National Photography Collection, CC BY 4.0 https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0, via Wikimedia Commons.


Featured Image: Image by Amrulqays Maarof on Pixabay.