UN / GAZA HUMANITARIAN SITUATION

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17-Nov-2023 00:05:31
Humanitarian Chief Martin Griffiths called for a cessation of hostilities in Gaza for an “indefinite period” in order to “facilitate an unimpeded humanitarian response” and to “give the people of Gaza a breather upon the terrible things that have been put on them on these last few weeks.” He also called “without conditions” for the release of all hostages. UNIFEED

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STORY: UN / GAZA HUMANITARIAN SITUATION
TRT: 05:31
SOURCE: UNIFEED
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LANGUAGE: ENGLISH / NATS

DATELINE: 17 NOVEMBER 2023, NEW YORK CITY / FILE

SHOTLIST:

FILE - NEW YORK CITY

1. Wide shot, United Nations Headquarters

17 NOVEMBER 2023, NEW YORK CITY

2. Wide shot, conference room
3. SOUNDBITE (English) Martin Griffiths, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA):
“We must be able to move from ad hoc delivery of assistance to a continuous flow of aid. It's like anyone, in any society, in any village, in any community, civilians need to have their essential needs met. They need to know when the next treatment or delivery will happen. They need to know it will be unimpeded and they need to know that aid will arrive.”
4. Wide shot, conference room
5. SOUNDBITE (English) Martin Griffiths, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA):
“You can call it what you will, and everyone has many different words for it. But the requirement from a humanitarian point of view is very simple. Stop the fighting to allow civilians to move safely. Do it for an indefinite period to facilitate an unimpeded humanitarian response. Give the people of Gaza a breather upon the terrible things that have been put on them in these last few weeks. And without condition, release for the hostages.”
6. Wide shot, conference room
7. SOUNDBITE (English) Nathalie Boucly, Acting Deputy Commissioner-General, United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA):
“Aid workers are asked to be complicit in displacing the population, and we cannot fully protect people in UN premises under the UN flag, we cannot reach people in need, including thousands still trapped in the north. We cannot provide sufficient assistance to those we can reach. As our fuel stocks are almost completely depleted, our ability to work and deliver our mandate is under threat.”
8. Wide shot, conference room
9. SOUNDBITE (English) Nathalie Boucly, Acting Deputy Commissioner-General, United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA):
“The dehumanization rhetoric in this conflict is worrying, reminiscent of the worst possible times in history. The massacres of the seventh of October by Hamas were horrific, and we strongly condemned them. But we have heard statements from top Israeli officials, referring to all Palestinians as human animals, and promising them destruction and hell. This language is extremely dangerous. It makes what was previously unacceptable, acceptable.”
10. Wide shot, conference room
11. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, World Health Organization (WHO): “Al-Shifa hospital must be enabled to function as a hospital. There are reportedly up to 300 health workers and 650 patients inside the hospital. Even if Hamas has used the hospital for military purposes, the hospital, and indeed all health care facilities, are never without protection under humanitarian law.”
12. Wide shot, conference room
13. SOUNDBITE (English) Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, Director-General, World Health Organization (WHO):
“The attacks by Hamas and other armed groups on Israel, the killing of 1,200 people, and the taking of more than 200 hostages were totally unjustifiable. But with at least 11,500 Gazans killed, 70 percent of them women and children; with 1.7 million people displaced; with two-thirds of Gaza’s hospitals out of action; with no electricity, no fuel, no clean water, no food; with every bomb that kills or maims a child; with every family buried beneath the rubble of its own home; the scale of Israel’s response appears increasingly unjustifiable.”
14. Wide shot, conference room
15. SOUNDBITE (English) Volker Türk, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR):
“No one is above the law. Breaches of international humanitarian law, even war crimes committed by one party, do not ever absolve the other from compliance with the principles of the law under human rights obligations. All serious allegations of multiple and profound breaches of international humanitarian and human rights law, whoever commits them, demand rigorous investigation and full accountability. When national authorities prove unwilling or unable to carry out such investigations and where there are contested narratives on particularly significant incidents, international investigation is called for.”
16. Wide shot, conference room
17. SOUNDBITE (English) Volker Türk, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR):
“The Security Council resolution 2712 on Wednesday, called, and I quote for ‘urgent and extended humanitarian pauses and corridors throughout the Gaza Strip,’ among other key demands on the parties. These repeated calls by the global community must not be ignored and implemented at once. There must be a ceasefire on humanitarian and human rights grounds and an end to the fighting, not only to deliver urgently needed food and provide meaningful humanitarian assistance, but also to create space for a path out of this horror.”
18. Wide shot, conference room

STORYLINE:

Humanitarian Chief Martin Griffiths today (17 Nov) called for a cessation of hostilities in Gaza for an “indefinite period” in order to “facilitate an unimpeded humanitarian response” and to “give the people of Gaza a breather upon the terrible things that have been put on them on these last few weeks.” He also called “without conditions” for the release of all hostages.

Addressing an Informal Plenary Meeting of the General Assembly on the humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip, Griffiths said, “we must be able to move from ad hoc delivery of assistance to a continuous flow of aid,” stressing that civilians “need to know when the next treatment or delivery will happen. They need to know it will be unimpeded and they need to know that aid will arrive.”

The Acting Deputy Commissioner-General of the UN Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) Nathalie Boucly, told the meeting that “aid workers are asked to be complicit in displacing the population, and we cannot fully protect people in UN premises under the UN flag, we cannot reach people in need, including thousands still trapped in the north, we cannot provide sufficient assistance to those we can reach.”

As fuel stocks are “almost completely depleted,” Boucly said, UNRWA’s ability to work and deliver on its mandate “is under threat.”

The UNRWA official said, “the dehumanization rhetoric in this conflict is worrying, reminiscent of the worst possible times in history. The massacres of the seventh of October by Hamas were horrific, and we strongly condemned them. But we have heard statements from top Israeli officials, referring to all Palestinians as human animals, and promising them destruction and hell. This language is extremely dangerous. It makes what was previously unacceptable, acceptable.”

The World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General, Dr. Tedros Ghebreyesus, said Al-Shifa, Gaza’s largest hospital, “must be enabled to function as a hospital.”

Tedros said, “there are reportedly up to 300 health workers and 650 patients inside the hospital. Even if Hamas has used the hospital for military purposes, the hospital, and indeed all health care facilities, are never without protection under humanitarian law.”

He said, “the attacks by Hamas and other armed groups on Israel, the killing of 1,200 people, and the taking of more than 200 hostages were totally unjustifiable. But with at least 11,500 Gazans killed, 70 percent of them women and children; with 1.7 million people displaced; with two-thirds of Gaza’s hospitals out of action; with no electricity, no fuel, no clean water, no food; with every bomb that kills or maims a child; with every family buried beneath the rubble of its own home; the scale of Israel’s response appears increasingly unjustifiable.”

The United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR), Volker Türk, for his part said, “no one is above the law. Breaches of international humanitarian law, even war crimes committed by one party, do not ever absolve the other from compliance with the principles of the law under human rights obligations. All serious allegations of multiple and profound breaches of international humanitarian and human rights law, whoever commits them, demand rigorous investigation and full accountability. When national authorities prove unwilling or unable to carry out such investigations and where there are contested narratives on particularly significant incidents, international investigation is called for.”

Security Council resolution 2712, adopted on Wednesday, he said, called for “urgent and extended humanitarian pauses and corridors throughout the Gaza Strip,” among other key demands on the parties.

Türk said, “these repeated calls by the global community must not be ignored and implemented at once. There must be a ceasefire on humanitarian and human rights grounds and an end to the fighting, not only to deliver urgently needed food and provide meaningful humanitarian assistance, but also to create space for a path out of this horror.”

More than 1.5 million Gazans are displaced, 18 hospitals have shut down, and hundreds of thousands are living in fear and under continuing Israeli bombardment, according to OCHA.
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