Don’t let another military assault put Gaza back on the agenda

May 31, 2023

“This was the sixth major Israel military attack in Gaza, among hundreds of smaller campaigns, over the past 15 years. Our former minister of defense referred to this as ‘mowing the lawn.’ Officials say things like ‘we have no choice but to manage the situation’ because ‘there is no solution.’ True leadership would work tirelessly to create hope instead of surrendering to perpetual occupation, recurrent military attacks, rocket fire from Gaza, and other travesties.”

Last week, Gisha Executive Director Tania Hary addressed the United Nations Security Council in New York. In her remarks, she underlined the important role of the international community in ensuring protection of Palestinians’ human rights, including by bringing to an end Israel’s ongoing and illegal closure of Gaza.

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Tania Hary’s full speech at the UN Security Council.

“The closure is part of what Israel calls the Separation Policy. Movement between Gaza, Israel, and the West Bank is barred other than in exceptional circumstances. Israel faces legitimate security challenges but movement restrictions aren’t in place for security needs alone. They drive political goals to pressure the population and maintain control over the West Bank. Most importantly, Israel’s narrow interpretation of its obligations towards Palestinians creates a crisis of accountability.”

In her address, Tania called on members of the council to protect the space for humanitarian and human rights work in Israel and Palestine, and emphasized the urgent necessity of bringing the closure, “a persistent and pernicious injustice and form of collective punishment,” to an end. “Please don’t let another military assault put Gaza and Palestine back on the agenda, put it there because you know it’s the right thing to do,” she concluded.

To read the full transcript of Tania’s address, click here.

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