Delaying halt of bloodshed in Gaza means sharing blame for Israeli crimes: Egypt’s FM



Thu, 09 Nov 2023 - 03:10 GMT


Thu, 09 Nov 2023 - 03:10 GMT

CAIRO – 9 November 2023: Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry has warned against procrastination in acting to halt the bloodshed in Gaza, stressing that it means sharing the blame for the Israeli violations and crimes against humanity.

As he participated in the Paris conference on Gaza held on Thursday, Shoukry stated that the continued global silence on Israeli grave violations and breach of int'l humanitarian law reflects flawed standards and human conscience.

Shoukry noted that the ongoing random Israeli bombardment in Gaza has claimed the lives of over 10,000 civilians, half of which are children, besieging, intimidating and displacing two million Palestinians.

“Israel's actions in Gaza are beyond any concept of the legitimate self-defense right,” Shoukry stressed.

He warned that the continued global silence on Israeli grave violations and breach of international humanitarian law reflects flawed standards and human conscience.

Shoukry echoed remarks by the UN Human Rights Commissioner, in which he said that both Israel and Hamas committed war crimes, adding: “has not the time come for the international community to call things by their right name and hold all those who have committed disgraceful practices accountable.”

Insufficient humanitarian aid

The Egyptian foreign minister said the Israeli unrelenting bombardment has generated a catastrophic humanitarian situation that he hopes the countries participating in this meeting will address.

He called for the international community to fulfill the needs of 2.5 million Palestinians who live a real tragedy in Gaza without shelter, food, water, electricity, fuel or health institutions that have been targeted.

“I call for the int'l community, especially donor states, to intensify their support to the Palestinians in Gaza and provide the required means for protecting their right in living on their territory,” he stated.

Shoukry noted that the aid provided to Gaza so far is “absolutely insufficient” for civilians' needs.

It's surprising that the total aid provided by the int'l community to Gaza since the start of the war has not exceeded the aid provided by Egypt alone, Shoukry said.

He also shed light on the “deliberately complicated” measures imposed by Israel to allow the entry of aid to Gaza, noting that such measures exacerbate the deteriorating situation in the strip and raise doubts about the Israeli goals.

Displacing Gazans

Shoukry reiterated Egypt’s calls for immediate and sustainable ceasefire in the strip, condemning all practices aiming to impose a new fait accompli on the Palestinians to forcibly displace them from their land.

“Opening a safe corridor for the civilians' movement to the south is not a positive development, but rather a continuation for displacement in violation of the international humanitarian law,” Shoukry said.

He noted that two thirds of Gaza residents have been displaced in a flagrant violation of the international humanitarian law.

Settling Israeli-Palestinian conflict

Incidents in Gaza “certainly confirm that the settlement of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict will not be achieved except through the two-state solution and the international legitimacy resolutions,” Shoukry said.

He affirmed that Egypt had warned against the conflict reaching to this dangerous point and had conducted intensified communications with all parties to stop the unilateral policies that fueled the fighting.

Mere expression of support to the two-state solution is insufficient unless the international community takes effective measures to achieve this goal, Shoukry stressed.

He added that Egypt categorically rejects the double-standard policies adopted by some countries toward the ongoing war and affirms that the human life is equal whether it was in Israel or in Palestine.

Shoukry blamed the “vicious circles of violence that the Israelis and Palestinians are suffering from alike” on the occupation's policies, including annexing lands, isolating the West Bank from Gaza and ignoring the Palestinian rights for over 70 years.

During the conference, international organizations and aid agencies called for immediate ceasefire in Gaza.

“We cannot wait a minute more for a humanitarian ceasefire or lifting of siege which is collective punishment,” Reuters quoted Secretary General of the Norwegian Refugee Council Jan Egeland as saying.

Meanwhile, France’s President Emmanuel Macron affirmed the need for a humanitarian pause “very quickly” and a push for a ceasefire.

“The situation is serious and getting worse each day,” Macron stressed.



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