The Australian Federation of Islamic Councils (AFIC) expresses profound concern and outrage over the recent Israeli military operations in Gaza, which have resulted in significant Palestinian casualties while rescuing hostages. This operation, as reported, involved the killing of over 200 Palestinian, including many women and children, and the wounding of over 400 more, to secure the release of four hostages.

Dr. Rateb Jneid, President of AFIC, stated, “The horrific loss of over 200 Palestinian lives in a military operation to rescue hostages, despite the presence of a viable ceasefire deal that could have secured the release of all hostages peacefully, is inexcusable. This shows a gross disregard for Palestinian lives and the principles of proportionality and necessity.”

AFIC stands in solidarity with all innocent lives affected and stresses the urgency for peace and respect for human rights in the region. We demand the immediate release of all hostages and detainees held without charges and call upon the international community to ensure their rights and freedoms are protected.

AFIC calls on the Australian Government to conduct a thorough review of all military exports to Israel, and other nations that supply Israel, to ensure that they are not contributing to actions that contravene international human rights standards and Australian export controls. It is imperative that the Australian public have full transparency regarding how domestically produced weapons and technology are being employed on the global stage. “It is our moral and legal obligation to verify that Australian resources are not fuelling overseas conflicts,” added Dr. Jneid.

Moreover, AFIC urges the Australian Government to take decisive diplomatic actions, including recalling the Australian Ambassador from Israel, expulsion of the Israeli Ambassador and the imposition of sanctions, to hold accountable those who perpetrate such acts and to prevent further atrocities.

“In moments like these, inaction signifies complicity. The Australian government’s response to this crisis will reflect our nation’s commitment to upholding international law and human rights. It is imperative that we do not stand by while such atrocities continue to take place” Dr. Jneid emphasized.

This is a moment for decisive action. Australia must reaffirm its commitment to international law and human rights. We cannot allow Australian resources to be implicated in operations that lead to such profound loss of life and suffering.

AFIC stands ready to support our government and international partners in efforts to ensure that all actions, whether in trade or diplomacy, reflect our unwavering commitment to justice and peace.

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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