Australian Federation of Islamic Councils (AFIC) stands firmly behind the statements of the Secretary General of the United Nations, Antonio Guterres. The Secretary General expressed deep concern about the clear violations of International Law in the recent conflict in Gaza, and renewed calls for a ceasefire and for all hostages to be released.

‘It is important to also recognise the attacks by Hamas did not happen in a vacuum. The Palestinian people have been subjected to 56 years of suffocating occupation,” Guterres said.

‘The collective punishment of the Palestinian People cannot be justified’, said Dr Rateb Jneid, President of AFIC.

AFIC renews its call for the Australian Government, and all world leaders, to meet their international obligations to protect human rights and prevent genocide. ‘the Government needs to urgently demand a ceasefire and be prepared to support international observers and peacekeepers, if needed. The 16-year siege of Gaza cannot be allowed to remain in place.’ Continued Dr Jneid.

Israeli calls for the UN Secretary General to step down demonstrate that Israel is not prepared to engage or commit to international law and is willing to violate them at will. They need to realise that the world will not stay silent whilst they ethnically cleanse northern Gaza.

Israel must allow unfettered access to emergency humanitarian aid, including water, medicine, food and fuel.

This is against the backdrop of over 600 killed overnight in Gaza and the death toll reaching 5,000. We express our concern that Israel continues to attack neighbours in the region, such as South Lebanon and Syria, in what could be seen as an attempt to escalate the conflict, all the while positioning itself as the victim.

This matter needs to resolve by law and not war.


Dr Rateb Jneid President


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