Press Release – Unfolding Violence in Gaza
The Australian Federation of Islamic Councils (AFIC) continues to follow the unfolding developments between Palestinians and Occupying forces overnight. We note the reportedly high deaths, and the deaths of children and non-combatants will not further the cause of peace. We ask that all sides show restraint.
We note that the killing of people has been occurring in conflict and years of attrition with blockades, lack of medical supplies and the prevention of fundamental human rights. The continual dehumanisation and humiliation of the Palestinian people and the international community’s unquestioning support of Israel continue to create an explosive situation for years.
Whilst we join calls for restraints on all sides, we also call on the international community to ensure the application of its own international commitments and agreements, such as numerous UN resolutions that specify the inalienable rights of Palestinians to self-determination, rights of return, and protection for all against violence, and the protection of religiously important sites. Primarily, Israel has not complied with these agreements and the international community has continually failed to enforce these agreements, allowing a 16-year illegal and inhumane blockade against Gaza; the building of illegal sites; and the continuing human rights violations against the Palestinian People.
“…human rights orgs have repeatedly warned states that security is only achievable by realizing the equal rights of all to live in dignity & freedom, & peace can only be achieved through int’l legality. Law, not war, can prevent cyclical reproduction of injustice.’ Francesca Albanese, UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian Territories via X 08/10/2023 (formerly Twitter)
AFIC has been vocal on numerous occasions about the need to recognise these agreements and to protect the rights of all Palestinians, including those in the West Bank and Gaza.
It is disheartening that the Australian Government has publicly proclaimed Israel’s right to defend itself without acknowledging the equally legitimate right of the Palestinian People to defend themselves
We call on the Australian Government to be more proactive in its own objectives of reaching a durable peace, and not react only in times of crisis.
Dr Rateb Jneid
President of AFIC
8 October 2023AFIC-PR-Gaza