Wednesday, February 21, 2024

UN chief: Gaza facing humanitarian disaster, ceasefire a necessity

Secretary General of the United Nations António Guterres called for an immediate ceasefire in the besieged Gaza Strip which he says is grappling with a disastrous situation due to Israeli blockade and bombardments.

In a phone call with Iranian Foreign Minister Hossein Amirabdollahian, the UN chief described the humanitarian situation in Gaza as disastrous.

He said Article 99 of the UN Charter has not been invoked since 1989, but it has been invoked now due to the complicated situation in Gaza and Palestine.

Guterres stressed the need for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza is felt more than ever before, adding a humanitarian end should be enforced to keep tensions from spreading in the region.

The UN chief underlined the necessity of pressing ahead with efforts to restore Palestinians’ rights and establish a Palestinian state based on resolutions already passed by the UN.

Amirabdollahian, for his part, appreciated the move by Guterres to invoke Article 99 of the UN Charter about developments in Palestine and the genocide in Gaza, stressing, “Using Article 99 of the UN Charter is a valiant move by you in order to maintain international peace and security and is backed by the world public opinion.”

The top Iranian diplomat touched upon the complicated and harrowing humanitarian situation in south Gaza as well as the displacement of women and children left homeless in cold winter in deserts in south Gaza, calling for rapid deterrence against the Israeli regime’s crimes and support for Palestinian citizens, including a swift opening of the Rafah border crossing to send in humanitarian aid and an end to the forced displacement of Palestinians.

The head of the Iranian foreign policy apparatus touched upon his phone conversations, on Friday, with Palestinian resistance leaders, adding, “As long as the United States backs the Zionist regime’s crimes and the continuation of war, not only is the ongoing war likely to spread, but also the situation in the region could explode out of hand.”

“The Israeli regime’s claim that Hamas called off the ceasefire is a sheer lie, and despite efforts to make the ceasefire last, Washington’s support for the continuation of the Israeli regime’s military strikes has made it difficult to reach a lasting ceasefire,” Amirabdollahian continued.

Israel launched the war on October 7 in response to an operation staged by Gaza’s resistance movements. Israel has killed more than 17,400 people, most of them women and children, and injured over 46,500 others in its relentless aerial and ground attacks on Gaza since.

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