The United Nations agency for Palestinian refugees in the Middle East (UNRWA) has lost 57 of its workers due to the military offensive launched by Israel in the Gaza Strip, according to the commissioner of this organization, Philippe Lazzarini. , which demanded the constant flow of humanitarian aid in the said territory due to the slow entry of convoys, is currently only “crumbs” in the face of the “siege” imposed by Israel in response to Hamas attacks.
“As we speak, the population of Gaza is dying,” cried Lazzarini at the start of a demonstration in Jerusalem where he warned that Palestinians are not only at risk of losing their lives under the projectiles launched by Israel Defense Forces. , but also because of the lack of basic supplies such as fuel, food and water or because of the collapse of health where there is almost no medical care and “the streets are beginning to fill with garbage.”
Lazzarini accused Israel of using the blockade – complete since the October 7 attack – to impose “collective punishment” on a population of more than 2 million people. “Comparing Gaza with Hamas is very dangerous and misleading,” he warned, recalling that in any conflict civilians enjoy special protection, as well as basic facilities or enclaves that may belong to the UN.
“Dehumanizing people” seeks to “make the unreasonable reasonable,” in his opinion, so he calls to prioritize the needs of a population that feels “abandoned” and that, although he initially sees the -open to cross the border in Rafá , ended up proving that it is hardly “a distraction.”
“Hell on earth”
Lazzarini called for “a significant and uninterrupted flow of aid” and addressed the doubts raised by the Israeli authorities about the destination of these supplies, including that they could be managed by UNRWA. “We have strong surveillance mechanisms. We will investigate all our vendors and partners to see if they are on the sanctions list,” he added.
“UNRWA does not and will not divert any aid so that it falls into the wrong hands,” he said, in a veiled allusion to militias such as Hamas and Islamic Jihad. Therefore, he asked that no excuses be made. “No one can say ‘I don’t know’ when there are images, videos and recordings of unspeakable suffering coming out of Gaza every hour. We cannot close our eyes to this tragedy of man.
“Millions of people are asking us, especially in the region, and especially in Gaza, why the world is not acting to end this hell on earth,” he said.