Patriarchs and Heads of Churches in Jerusalem call for immediate, sustainable ceasefire in Gaza

JERUSALEM: The Patriarchs and Heads of the Churches in Jerusalem reiterated in a statement their call for an immediate and sustained ceasefire in the besieged Gaza strip.

‘In issuing this Easter proclamation, we fully recognize the intense suffering that surrounds us here in the Holy Land, as well as in many other parts of the world. Speaking more directly to our own circumstances, we repeat our denunciation of all violent actions in the present devastating war, especially those directed against innocent civilians, and we reiterate our call for an immediate and sustained ceasefire.’

‘In concert with these, we renew our plea for the speedy distribution of humanitarian aid; the unimpeded access of fully-equipped doctors and medical staff to tend to the sick and injured; and the opening of internationally facilitated negotiations aimed at ending and moving beyond the present cycle of violence,’ said the statement.

‘Only in this way, we believe, can a comprehensive solution be finally advanced for a just and l
asting peace here in the [holy] land.’

While extending this Easter message to Christians and others around the world, we offer our special greetings to those of the faithful in Gaza who have been bearing especially heavy crosses over the past several months. These include those taking refuge inside St. Porphyrios and Holy Family Churches, as well as the courageous staff and volunteers of the Anglican-run Ahli Hospital, along with the patients they serve, added the statement.

Source: Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA

UN envoy backs demand for immediate Gaza ceasefire amid ‘cataclysmic suffering’

NEW YOK: The UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Tor Wennesland today issued a fervent plea for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire, amid ‘cataclysmic’ suffering in the Gaza Strip and continuing violence in the occupied West Bank.

The call by Special Coordinator Tor Wennesland followed Monday’s adoption by the Security Council of a resolution ‘demanding’ an immediate ceasefire in the enclave for the remainder of Ramadan.

He said he was ‘appalled’ by the immense scale of killings, destruction and suffering wrought by Israel’s military campaign in Gaza, with civilian killings at an unprecedented rate.

‘Nothing can justify the collective punishment of the Palestinian people,’ he emphasized.

‘The life-threatening conditions facing the more than 1.7 million internally displaced persons within an ever-diminishing space in Gaza must be addressed immediately. I am extremely concerned by the possible nightmare of more than one million people being displaced again if Israel proceeds with its pl
anned ground operation in Rafah.’

With an ‘imminent’ famine in the north and ‘horrifying’ levels of suffering across Gaza, Wennesland called on Israel to fulfill its obligations under international law and facilitate rapid and unimpeded humanitarian access into and throughout the Strip.

He noted that humanitarian work in Gaza is extremely dangerous and that aid convoys continue to face attacks, stressing that the UN and aid partners must be able to deliver assistance safely.

This means that humanitarian locations, movements, and workers must be protected more effectively and that the UN be allowed the equipment it needs to increase staff safety, he added.

He reiterated that ‘for aid delivery at scale there is no meaningful substitute to delivery by land’.

Turning his attention to the occupied West Bank, Wennesland expressed alarm by attacks carried out by Israeli colonists against Palestinians, including in the proximity of Israeli Forces.

Wennesland also emphasized the importance of upholding the statu
s quo at Holy Sites in Jerusalem, particularly during Ramadan.

He also raised alarm over the relentless expansion of Israeli colonial settlements in the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem, and the demolition and seizure of Palestinian structures.

‘The ever-expanding settlement footprint, including outposts, further entrenches the occupation, while severely impeding the exercise by the Palestinian people of its right to self-determination,’ he said, reiterating that Israeli colonial settlements ‘have no legal validity, and are in flagrant violation of international law.’

‘Ultimately, any substantial solution for Gaza, and the broader Israeli-Palestinian conflict, is political,’ he said.

‘It is imperative to set the conditions for an agreed political framework that can outline tangible, irreversible steps towards ending the occupation and establishing a Two-State solution – Israel and Palestine, of which Gaza is an integral part, living side-by-side in peace and security, on the basis of UN resolu
tions, previous agreements, and international law, with Jerusalem as the capital of both States,’ he said.

Source: Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA

Australia welcomes UN Security Council resolution on Gaza ceasefire during Ramadan

CANBERRA: Australia’s Minister for Foreign Affairs, Senator Penny Wong welcomed the adoption of a UNSC resolution demanding an immediate ceasefire for the holy month of Ramadan, leading to a lasting ceasefire.

International humanitarian law must be upheld, she stressed in a post on the X platform, stressing that all parties must comply with this resolution.

People in Gaza are starving. Reports that UNRWA is being denied access are unacceptable, she added.

‘Australia is pursuing this with the Netanyahu Government. We reiterate they must let humanitarian aid reach people in desperate need.’

Source: Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA

PRCS: Al-Amal Hospital in Gaza completely out of service by Israeli forces

AL-BIREH: The Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS) announced today that the Society’s Al-Amal Hospital in the city of Khan Yunis has gone completely out of service after the occupation forces forced the hospital’s crews and the wounded to evacuate it and closed its entrances with dirt barriers.

According to a statement, the PRCS said Israeli occupation forces besieged the Al-Amal Hospital two days ago amid violent shelling and heavy gunfire, killing a citizen and a PRCS team member.

It added that the occupation forces opened fire at two of the society’s crews while they were removing rubble to pave the way for vehicles to enable them to evacuate the killed and injured easily, which led to the injury of one staff member, while the fate of the other member remained unknown.

The Society expressed its profound regret for the closure of Al-Amal Hospital following the international community’s failure to provide the necessary protection for its teams, patients and the displaced people.

It affirmed that the h
ospital was besieged for over 40 days and was repeatedly bombed before the occupation forces reinstated the siege and forced everyone inside to leave.

The hospital suffered the same fate as the PRCS’s Al-Quds Hospital in Gaza City, which was taken out of service several months ago, it revealed.

Source: Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA

After UN Security Council’s resolution on Gaza ceasefire, it is time to stop the aggression and recognize the Palestinian state, says presidency

RAMALLAH: Nabil Abu Rudeineh, spokesman for President Mahmoud Abbas, said that the recent UN Security Council resolution led to unprecedented international isolation of Israel.

He added despite the current tension between Israel and US regarding UN Security Council’s resolution on Gaza ceasefire, US military support and the political protection it provides to Israel have not yet changed in a way that would lead to stopping the aggression against the Palestinian people.

Abu Rudeina called on the American administration to take more serious and more effective positions because the real battle that needs to be addressed is not only the aggression on the Gaza Strip, but it is deeper.

He affirmed the importance of resolving the Palestinian issue and establishing the State of Palestine with East Jerusalem as its capital in accordance with Arab and international legitimacy and international recognition, so that the region does not continue to face endless wars.

Source: Palestine News and Information Agency – WA

Tunisia welcomes UN Security Council’s resolution on Gaza ceasefire

TUNISIA: Tunisia today welcomed the Security Council’s adoption of a resolution calling for an immediate ceasefire in the Gaza Strip.

The Tunisian Ministry of Foreign Affairs called for the importance of respecting this decision and implementing it immediately and unconditionally and taking all measures to ensure accelerating the delivery of humanitarian aid into the Gaza Strip.

The Ministry called for providing the Palestinian people with international protection and putting an end to the unjust siege imposed on them.

It aslo stressed that the legal and moral duty and responsibility place the international community before its responsibilities in order to put an end to the war of extermination against the Palestinian people so that they regain their full rights and establish their independent state on all of the land of Palestine, with Jerusalem as its capital.

Source: Palestine News and Information Agency – WAFA

Al-Dabaiba receives the President of the Baker International Corporation and the accompanying delegation.

Tripoli: The Prime Minister of the National Unity Government, Abdul Hamid Dabaiba, received today, Tuesday, the President of the Baker International Corporation, Douglas Baker, and his accompanying delegation during their visit to Libya to meet with a number of Libyan institutions to discuss aspects of cooperation and investment between them.

The media office of the Prime Minister of the National Unity Government stated that the Foundation’s team presented a presentation outlining the areas of work and proposed aspects of cooperation with Libyan institutions, expressing their desire to work inside Libya.

The office added that “Al-Dabaiba” confirmed its support for the presence of foreign companies at all levels in Libya and cooperation with Libyan institutions in all fields for the sake of partnership and cooperation, directing the necessity of cooperation, partnership and investment in promising fields in Libya, the most important of which are renewable energies and gas production.

Source: Libyan News Ag

Qadirbuh participates in the activities of the Global Forum to Combat Corruption and Promote Integrity.

Paris: The Chairman of the Administrative Control Authority, Abdullah Qadirbuh, and his accompanying delegation participated today, Tuesday, in the Global Forum for Combating Corruption and Promoting Integrity, which is being held in the French capital, Paris, and organized by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development under the title ‘Designing Our Future with Integrity.’ .

According to the Authority, Qadirbuh’s participation in the two-day forum from March 26 to 27, 2024 comes in the context of the Authority’s ongoing efforts to build strong international partnerships to combat corruption and achieve justice and sustainable development, noting that the forum is an opportunity to exchange new ideas, visions and evidence. , and explore how anti-corruption policies and integrity frameworks can enhance our ability to address future challenges.

The forum aims to enhance integrity and combat corruption, and witnesses broad international participation by government agencies and bodies specialized
in the field of integrity, oversight and anti-corruption, in addition to civil society institutions, academics and researchers.

The forum coincides with the twenty-fifth anniversary of the Anti-Bribery Convention, which is the cornerstone of the global battle against corruption, and is considered a catalyst for changing policies and strengthening anti-corruption efforts at the global level.

Source: Libyan News Agency