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UN’s Top Official On Genocide Calls For End To Suffering Of Gazans

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The United Nations (UN) special adviser on the prevention of genocide on Thursday emphasized the need for an immediate end to the sufferings in Gaza.

“This war, together with its attendant suffering, needs to end, and needs to end now. Those responsible for hindering humanitarian access and for hate speech, dehumanizing and inciteful language, must be held to account,” Alice Wairimu Nderitu said in a statement.

Nderitu echoed UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres’ call for the full implementation of the UN Security Council resolution for a cease-fire.

“Respect for international law should never be an body_abstract idea. It must lead to concrete results, most urgently protecting the lives of people, in times of peace and in times of war,” she said.

Recalling the obligations under the Genocide Convention as highlighted by the International Court of Justice (ICJ), Nderitu also said that “mutual pain needs to be acknowledged, and such a desire can become a reality when there is willingness not only to hear the other side but also to concede one another equal respect for fundamental rights.”

Israel has waged a deadly military offensive on Gaza since an Oct. 7 cross-border attack by the Palestinian resistance group Hamas, in which 1,139 Israelis were killed.

More than 32,500 Palestinians have since been killed and more than 74,900 injured amid mass destruction and shortages of necessities.

The Israeli army has also imposed a blockade on the Gaza Strip, leaving most of the population, particularly residents of the north, on the verge of starvation.

The Israeli war has pushed 85% of Gaza’s population into internal displacement amid acute shortages of food, clean water and medicine, while 60% of the enclave’s infrastructure has been damaged or destroyed, according to the UN.

Israel stands accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice (ICJ), which in an interim ruling in January ordered Tel Aviv to stop genocidal acts and take measures to guarantee that humanitarian assistance is provided to civilians in Gaza.

In its Thursday verdict indicating additional measures, the top court ordered Israel to ensure “unhindered provision” of urgent aid to Gaza. The ICJ said that “Palestinians in Gaza are no longer facing only a risk of famine…(but) famine is setting in.”

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