The Australian Federation of Islamic Councils (AFIC) expresses its profound sorrow and unequivocal condemnation following the tragic loss of five aid workers, including an Australian national, in the Gaza Strip due to Israeli air strikes. This attack on a convoy from the World Central Kitchen (WCK), a humanitarian NGO providing essential food aid, represents a grievous violation of human rights and international humanitarian law.

Dr. Rateb Jneid, President of AFIC, stated, “The targeting of humanitarian aid workers is a deplorable act that shocks the conscience of the world. Among the victims was an Australian dedicated to saving lives in the most desperate of circumstances. Our hearts go out to their families and colleagues. This loss is not just a tragedy for the victims’ loved ones but for humanity.”

In recent months, we have witnessed a distressing pattern of attacks against aid missions and those in dire need of assistance. The deliberate obstruction and targeting of humanitarian aid are acts that cannot be justified under any circumstances. These are not random acts of violence but a systematic campaign to deny the most basic human necessities to the people of Gaza, exacerbating an already dire humanitarian crisis.

AFIC also notes with grave concern Israel’s continued defiance of international directives, including the rulings of the International Court of Justice and a recent UN Security Council resolution calling for an immediate ceasefire and the unimpeded delivery of humanitarian aid. “The refusal to allow aid into Gaza, where famine now looms large over an entire population, is unconscionable. It is a stark manifestation of using starvation as a weapon of war, which must be condemned by all world leaders,” Dr. Jneid emphasised.

AFIC calls upon the Australian Government to take a stand against these atrocities. It is imperative that Australia:

  • condemns these actions,
  • ceases all military exports to Israel, and
  • demands an immediate and permanent ceasefire.

Silence and inaction in the face of such clear violations only serve to embolden the oppressors and undermine the values we hold dear as Australians and as members of the global community committed to justice and human rights.

“The path to peace is paved with the principles of justice, compassion, and the unwavering commitment to uphold the dignity of every human being. Let us be clear, peace cannot be achieved on the backs of the innocent. We must all raise our voices, demand accountability, and work tirelessly for a future where such tragedies are no more,” concluded Dr. Jneid.

AFIC stands in solidarity with all those working to bring relief and peace to Gaza. We mourn the loss of these brave souls and recommit ourselves to advocate for the rights and dignity of all people affected by this conflict.

AFIC, established in 1964, stands as the Peak Muslim Organisation in Australia, with 170 members including 9 State and Territory Councils. It has a rich history of pioneering numerous community services and actively advocating for the rights and representation of the Muslim community.


Dr Rateb Jneid, President

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