Foreign Minister accuses Israel of attempting to 'assassinate' UNRWA

Foreign Minister accuses Israel of attempting to 'assassinate' UNRWA
Amman - Foreign Minister Ayman Safadi Tuesday said, "Israel's attempt to politically assassinate the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) is part of its plan to liquidate the Palestinian cause."اضافة اعلان

Safadi added, "This is something the world has become more aware of, and from here we see that many countries, despite all the accusations levelled at the agency and despite all the attempts made to liquidate the agency, continue to support UNRWA."

In a conference with UNRWA Commissioner-General Philippe Lazzarini following talks on ending the Israeli war on Gaza Safadi said, "Our meeting today is a continuation of the ongoing consultation process between the Kingdom and UNRWA to support the agency in these tragic circumstances that the Israeli occupation forces continue to impose on Gaza and the agency."

He added, "Our conversation revealed that the situation is still worsening tragically, the humanitarian situation is catastrophic, and UNRWA's ability to carry out its duty and serve our people in Gaza is still limited due to the Israeli-imposed obstacles on the agency."

Safadi added, "The humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza is worsening with the continuation of the aggression, and the aid that enters is at a minimum and does not meet the minimum needs of the Palestinian citizens in Gaza.

"The ability of UNRWA and United Nations institutions and organisations to deliver aid has also declined significantly as a result of the Israeli occupation forces not adhering to their international obligations and ensuring protection for United Nations personnel in Gaza."

"Today we discussed the ways that we can resort to improve the humanitarian situation. The result we reached is that without a firm, strict, real, clear and immediate position from the international community that would force Israel to carry out its responsibilities, as the occupying power, and forces it to bring in aid and open all crossings, we will find ourselves facing a humanitarian catastrophe greater than a catastrophe the likes of which modern history has not witnessed so far," Safadi warned.

He added, "We talked about our joint effort that began years ago to provide political and material support to the agency, and we discussed preparations for the conference that the Kingdom will organise in cooperation with Sweden and under the sponsorship of other countries to ensure continued political support for the agency."

He said, "In the face of the inhuman and catastrophic reality imposed by the Israeli occupation forces on Gaza, there is also a heroic reality carried out by the agency, which continues to do everything it can to help a people subjected to brutal aggression."

He added, "UNRWA offered 197 of its staff who died during this aggression. Its schools have become shelters, and even these schools are not safe from the daily Israeli bombing of Gaza.

"Many UNRWA employees and our people in Gaza died in shelters that were supposed to be safe, but the truth has become clear. Now, there is no safe place in Gaza as long as the aggression continues."

"The Kingdom stands with all its capabilities with the agency and continues, under the direct guidance of His Majesty the King, may God protect him, to do everything it can to provide the necessary support to the agency," Safadi said.

He said, "We are looking at now and looking beyond the moment when this aggression stops, as no other organisation can do what UNRWA can do, not only in providing humanitarian aid but also in providing health services and education."

He added, "We have lost an entire generation in Gaza as a result of this aggression. More than 500,000 Palestinian children in Gaza now have not gone to school for more than 9 months. All of this demonstrates the scale of the catastrophe imposed by this aggression and that the consequences of this catastrophe will not end with a cessation of the aggression but will continue for years and years."

On the West Bank, Safadi said, "We discussed the situation in the West Bank, where the agency’s ability to carry out its role is being besieged, at a time when Israel is also committing war crimes there, and there is a clear violation of international law and complete undermining of all chances of achieving a just and comprehensive peace that will not happen. This will be achieved only if an independent, sovereign Palestinian state is established along the lines of June 4, 1967, with occupied Jerusalem as its capital."

He said 2024 witnessed the "largest" operations to confiscate Palestinian lands and the "largest" land confiscation operation in about 30 years in the West Bank, in addition to raids and aggression against Palestinian communities in the occupied West Bank and settler terrorism.

He said, "Unfortunately, the situation is still catastrophic, and the international community is still unable to curb Israeli aggression and provide the Palestinian people with the minimum rights to water, food, medicine, treatment and education. There is a positive and bright side in the sacrifices that UNRWA and other international organisations continue to make."

Lazzarini lauded Jordan for its support and the "great" effort it makes to support Palestinian refugees.

He said, "In the West Bank, there is a silent war living in the shadow of the war in Gaza, where more than 500 Palestinians, including more than 130 children, have been killed since October 7."

He added, "More than half of UNRWA's facilities, including schools and health facilities in Gaza, were destroyed."

Lazzarini added, "When a ceasefire is reached, UNRWA would be the only organisation that can offer some kind of hope to millions of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip."

In response to a question about the targeting of UNRWA, Lazzarini said, "There is a blatant and raging aggression against the agency and its role.

"The agency has become and continues to be a target of war, in violation of international humanitarian law. Those responsible for these violations must be held accountable. There is also a political goal, which is to eliminate UNRWA to strip the Palestinians of their right to establish their state and kill the aspirations of the Palestinians in general."

Safadi said, "Attempts to kill the agency have been ongoing for years, not just during the past nine months, and many countries in the region and outside have stood with UNRWA because they believe in the humanity of the agency and also believe in the importance of its role not only in helping the Palestinian people and providing education and health services to them but also in building the Palestinian future."

Safadi stressed, "We will continue to make every effort to work with our friends and brothers to ensure that the agency obtains the capabilities it needs to play its role and fulfil its international mandate."

He said, "There is clear political support for the agency from many countries. This was evident in the vote to renew the agency's mandate, and it is also evident in the continuation of many countries not only to provide support but also to emphasise the role and importance of UNRWA."

Read more National Content
Jordan News