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Palestine ceasefire

After eleven days of Israeli aggression, a ceasefire has been reached to stop the blistering attacks in Palestine which have caused immense damage to civilian lives and property. The announcement of the truce between Israel and Israel was a sigh of relief for innocent Palestinians as they once again rebuild their lives.

The ceasefire, brokered by Egypt, comes after mounting pressure on Israel to stop the attacks which targeted women, children, schools, hospitals, media houses, and aid agencies. These were a gross violation of international law which forbids attacking civilian settlements. In the eleven day conflict, more than 243 people, including 66 children, were killed including children, more than 50,000 were displaced, while 50 schools and hospitals were destroyed. The atrocities cannot be forgotten and the world community must reconsider its policies towards Israel.

We should hope the ceasefire holds and there is lasting peace. It is a fragile situation and could drag the volatile region back into war with the slightest trigger. The Hamas movement, which controls the Gaza Strip, is the only fighting force for Palestine. It is essential to deploy an independent peace-keeping force and humanitarian mission to the Palestinian region to maintain peace and allow unhindered access to aid agencies.

Pakistan was one of the most vocal countries in its condemnation of Israeli aggression. It was a rare occasion that the OIC requested to convene a session of the UNGA on the Palestine issue. There was the conspicuous absence of many prominent nations on the global stage. However, Pakistan’s efforts to bring a united approach and express solidarity with the Palestinians must be welcomed. It shows how pressing issues can be raised if we make a collective effort for our rights.

Today Gaza remains one of the most impoverished regions in the world facing an economic blockade which stops essential supplies. There are more than 20 hours of power outages and the only coronavirus centre was destroyed, leaving the region vulnerable amid the pandemic. The world community should make serious efforts for the region’s development.

Israel has resorted to attacking Palestinians whenever it faced a political crisis and justified it under the pretext of defending itself. We should not stop the efforts and instead work for resolving the decades-old conflict which remains the flashpoint hindering peace in the Middle East.