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Stop war, open urgent aid corridor to Gaza, Pakistan tells UNSC

UNITED NATIONS: Pakistan’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations Munir Akram demanded the immediate opening of the Aid Corridor to Gaza.

Addressing the Security Council meeting, he said that Pakistan demanded an immediate and unconditional ceasefire. He warned that Israeli aggression could lead to a wider and more dangerous conflict.

Muneer Akram lamented that the ceasefire resolution could not be passed, placing heavy responsibility on those responsible for escalating the conflict.

“Continuation of the Israeli campaign in the Gaza will lead to further massive civilian casualties and could trigger a wider and more dangerous conflict,” the Pakistani envoy told the meeting addressed by a total of 86 speakers from countries and regional groups – including more than 20 ministers – that pushed the conflict to the centre of world geopolitics.

In his speech to the Security Council, Ambassador Akram conveyed Pakistan’s full support and solidarity with Palestinian brothers and sisters in these tragic and challenging times.

Israel’s relentless and indiscriminate bombardment of Gaza over the last 17 days has killed more than 5,000 people and injured another 15,000, the Pakistani envoy said, “strongly and unequivocally” condemning Israel’s airstrikes and military actions in Gaza, particularly attacks on schools, residential buildings and hospitals.

Violations of international humanitarian law

“These Israeli attacks on civilians, civilian objects and infrastructure, blockade of water, food and fuel as well as the forced transfer of people from the occupied territory, are flagrant violations of international humanitarian law and amount to war crimes.,” he said, adding, “Those responsible for these atrocity crimes must be held accountable.”

Ambassador Akram regretted the Security Council has been unable to issue a call for a ceasefire. In this regard, a heavy responsibility rests on those who contribute to the prolongation of this conflict, he said.

“Any attempt to create a false equivalence between Israel, the occupying power, and the Palestinians, the victims of this occupation, is untenable – legally, morally and politically,” he added.

Akram demanded that the Council must reject Israel’s attempts to displace the Gazans, within or outside Gaza.

Under international law, he said, the struggle of people living under foreign occupation for self-determination and national liberation is legitimate and cannot be equated with terrorism.

“It is the suppression of this struggle, which is illegal,” the Pakistani envoy said, pointing out that throughout history, colonial powers have portrayed national liberation movements as terrorism.

“Some in this Council have offered protection to their allies who are oppressing occupied peoples in Palestine or Kashmir,” he said.

“Under the UN Charter, States have the right of self-defence against attacks on their sovereignty and territorial integrity. Yet, a State, which is in forcible occupation of a foreign territory, cannot invoke the ‘right to self-defence’ against those whose territory it has illegally occupied,”

Pakistan supports Palestine as Al-Quds Al-Sharif as its capital

Ambassador Akram added, “The perpetuation of Israeli occupation will not bring peace to the Holy Land. Durable peace will emerge from the internationally agreed two-state solution and from the creation of a secure, viable, contiguous, and sovereign state of Palestine on the basis of the pre-June 1967 borders, with Al-Quds Al-Sharif as its capital.”

UNSC fails to adopt 2 resolutions for ceasefire in Gaza

Last week, the Security Council failed to adopt two previous draft resolutions addressing the escalation in the Middle East. The first from Russia calling for an immediate ceasefire, failed to get enough votes, while a Brazilian draft was vetoed by the United States. Although it called for humanitarian pauses for aid access, the US determined objected to the fact it did not mention Israel’s right to self-defence.

The UAE minister HE Reem Al Hashimy joined Arab foreign ministers in an Arab Group press stakeout at the headquarters of the UN.

The Group also emphasised that the war’s continuation will only lead to more destruction and will not bring anyone security or peace. Furthermore, it recalled the need for justice for the Palestinian people by granting them their right to establish their state on the June 4, 1967 borders, highlighting that this conflict did not begin today, nor did it begin this month, but rather that it is the occupation that continues to oppress the Palestinian people.

The ministers reiterated the unity of the Arab position and announced that there will be further joint efforts to address the war and the threat it poses to regional security.