Arab Organisation for Human Rights in the UK (AOHR UK) warned against violence by the Israeli occupation against civilians in occupied Palestine in general and the besieged Gaza Strip in particular, following the events taking place since this morning, Saturday, October 7, 2023.
The Israeli occupation has repeatedly launched brutal attacks on the residents of Gaza, targeting civilians, children, homes, hospitals, and buildings. These brutal attacks have resulted in massive human and material losses.
Furthermore, the disproportionate use of force and disregard for civilian lives in these attacks constitute a war crime and a clear violation of international law, and will only deepen the cycle of violence and exacerbate the suffering of innocent Palestinians.
The international community bears responsibility for the current escalation of violence in the occupied territories due to its unjustified silence on the ongoing crimes of the occupation against the Palestinian people and their religious sanctities.
The repeated incursions of soldiers and settlers into Al-Aqsa Mosque, assaulting the worshippers inside, provoking their feelings, and threatening to demolish their sanctities continue without any consideration for the feelings of Muslims around the world.
The Israeli occupation has been violating international law and ignoring United Nations resolutions that obligated it to stop the escalation, respect the religious sanctities in Palestine, and stop building settlements. However, the occupation authorities ignored these decisions and continued their arbitrary and provocative practices against the Palestinian people and still commits the most horrific crimes against them.
The establishment of Israeli settlements in the occupied territories constitutes a clear violation of international law and United Nations resolutions, as the Israelis should not have been allowed to build these settlements in the first place, as it is not only illegal, but also poses a real threat to the lives of Palestinians due to settler violence against them, in addition to demolishing their homes and build settlement units in their place.
The current rage is only a result of the unjust and inhumane siege that has been imposed against the Gaza Strip for more than 17 years. The siege which started in 2006 has turned Gaza into a large prison and led to huge humanitarian crisis and turned the lives of the people of Gaza into hell.
The siege isolated the people from the outside world, restricted their movements, and prevented the entry of humanitarian aid including food, medicine and building materials.
Recently, the Israeli occupation issued a decision to prevent exports of goods and products from the Gaza Strip, depriving the population of means of livelihood, especially destroying the agriculture and fishing sectors entirely.
The repeated Israeli attacks on Islamic holy places, like Al-Aqsa Mosque, should have been addressed by the international community from the beginning, and it should have taken the necessary action to end it.
Freedom of worship and the protection of religious places are basic principles of human rights and must be respected by all parties.
AOHR UK called on the international community to intervene immediately and to take the necessary action to protect civilians in Palestine from any Israeli aggression. Silence over previous Israeli attacks has given impunity for the occupation and encouraged it to commit more violations of international humanitarian law without fear of accountability, which contributes to fuelling anger and expanding the cycle of violence.