Statement delivered at HRC55 on Item 7: Interactive Dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967

Statement delivered at HRC55 on Item 7: Interactive Dialogue with the Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967

On behalf of Defence for Children International (DCI) – Palestine

 

 

This month marks more than five months since Israeli forces began carrying out genocide against the Palestinian people in Gaza, killing more than 31,700 people, including more than 12,300 children, and forcibly displacing at least 1.9 million people. DCI-Palestine believes the death toll to be much higher, as thousands of people remain missing under the rubble.

 

 

Israeli authorities have deliberately blocked and severely restricted the flow of humanitarian aid to Palestinians in the Gaza Strip. Nowhere near enough food, clean water, and medicine is reaching Palestinian families devastated by Israeli forces’ military offensive, and now, children are starving to death.

 

At least 24 Palestinian children have died of malnutrition and dehydration. Malnutrition is a slow death, affecting in particular young children, children living with disabilities, the elderly, and pregnant and breastfeeding mothers. DCI-P reiterates that this death toll is likely to be much higher, as the official count only includes Palestinians who were hospitalised, or whose families reported their deaths to the ministry.

 

Malnutrition disproportionately affects young children, especially children with disabilities who may require a specialised diet. Malnutrition is a treatable condition and more than 80 percent of children who are acutely malnourished survive when they are treated, according to UNICEF. But without urgent action, more and more of Gaza’s children will die from starvation, malnutrition, and dehydration.

 

We strongly urge all member states to:

  • Demand Israeli authorities immediately cease all war crimes and crimes against humanity perpetrated, and cease all gross violations against children;
  • Enforce the prohibition of genocide in accordance with their non-derogable obligations;
  • Demand the immediate implementation of resolution 2728 and ensure this leads to a lasting ceasefire and withdrawal of Israeli forces from Gaza;
  • Demand Israeli authorities open the Rafah crossing and allow the flow of humanitarian aid and restore funding to UNRWA ;
  • End all complicity and financial and diplomatic support to the Israeli apartheid system;
  • Take urgent action to ensure accountability for violations by

○   supporting efforts by the International Criminal Court to hold perpetrators accountable and by carrying out obligations under the Geneva Conventions or Rome Statute to exercise criminal jurisdiction and arrest persons alleged to have committed, or who ordered to have committed, international crimes; and by

○   cooperating with other international independent fact-finding and accountability mechanisms

Read full statement here.