We call for peace and ceasefire in Gaza

We endorsed a note to international organizations signed by more than 185 civil society organizations calling for an immediate ceasefire by Israel in Gaza, as well as urgent humanitarian measures.

We condemn the Hamas terrorist attacks on the civilian population of Israel, considered crimes against humanity under international law. Among those kidnapped and taken hostage by Hamas are at least 21 Argentine citizens whose release we demand.

Guided by the principle of self-defense invoked by Israel and the general rules of international law, it is imperative to prohibit responses involving indiscriminate military actions that perilously endanger the unarmed Palestinian population. The humanitarian crisis in Gaza has already escalated to catastrophic levels, marked by the loss of thousands of lives, including over 3,000 children, forced displacement, severe injuries, a shortage of hospitals and medical supplies, as well as scarcities of water, food, and energy. In solidarity with 185 civil society organizations worldwide, we fervently advocate for an urgent humanitarian ceasefire.

Joint note:

Petition from civil society organizations addressed to:

United Nations Secretary General, Antonio Guterres

President of the European Parliament, Roberta Metsola

President of the European Union, Ursula von der Leyen

President of the International Committee of the Red Cross, Mirjana Spoljaric Egger

In recent days, the Gaza Strip, one of the most densely populated areas globally, housing over 2.2 million Palestinians in just 365 square kilometers, over half of whom are children, has experienced a massive military assault by the Israeli army. The population of Gaza, under a tense and suffocating siege for nearly 17 years, is predominantly made up of Palestinian refugees displaced by the expanding Israeli occupation. To date, over 2,500 people have lost their lives, thousands have sustained injuries, and more than half a million individuals, including artists, writers, and civil society leaders, have been forcibly displaced. Entire neighborhoods have been razed and reduced to rubble due to intense and indiscriminate Israeli bombardment.

Israel has cut off all basic supplies, including food, water and fuel. Internet services were cut off last Friday as Israeli soldiers geared up for a ground invasion of the strip they have blockaded by sea, air and land for nearly two decades. This siege is preventing emergency humanitarian supplies that have been positioned on the Egyptian side of the border from entering the region. Hospitals are quickly running out of supplies, while international aid agencies are sounding the alarm bells and warning that clean water and essential food supplies are running dangerously low, posing a severe risk to an entire population.

If not addressed immediately, the unfolding situation will result in one of the worst humanitarian crises witnessed in decades. We implore people worldwide who uphold the basic principles of humanity and justice to act now to stop this catastrophic humanitarian situation. Nothing justifies the collective punishment of an entire population, predominantly composed of children, nor the unbridled attacks on the Gaza Strip targeting Palestinian civilians. This has resulted in their forced displacement, the bombing of their homes, schools, and hospitals, and the destruction of critical infrastructure. We mourn the loss of all civilian lives and express deep concern for those currently facing imminent threats. Civilians must never be targeted.

We now call upon you to exert all possible pressure on the Israeli government to implement the following measures:

  • Immediately and without delay, open all crossing points into the Gaza Strip to facilitate the unrestricted flow of humanitarian aid.
  • Restore the supply of fuel, electricity, water, and communication services to Gaza.
  • Facilitate the safe return of forcibly displaced persons to their homes.
  • Agree to an immediate humanitarian ceasefire.
  • Make every conceivable effort to bring an end to the 16-year siege of Gaza and actively promote a political process leading to sustainable and just peace in Palestine.

We hope that our voices as representatives of civil society around the world will be heard and that the lives of civilians in the Gaza Strip will be saved.