Arab leaders in Manama summit call for immediate Israeli military withdrawal from Palestinian Rafah

Ahram Online , Thursday 16 May 2024

Arab leaders called for an immediate Israeli military withdrawal from Rafah city in Gaza and an immediate and permanent ceasefire in the Gaza Strip, according to a statement issued after the conclusion of the Arab summit in the Bahraini capital, Manama.

Arab League Secretary-General Ahmed Aboul Gheit and Bahrain Foreign Minister Abdullatif bin Rashid Al Zayani speak during a joint press conference at the conclusion of the 33rd Arab League summit in the Bahraini capital Manama May 16, 2024. AFP


They also called for ending all attempts of forced displacement and all forms of siege and for full and sustainable access to humanitarian aid.

Furthermore, the Arab leaders condemned in the strongest terms “the ongoing brutal Israeli aggression on Gaza and the crimes committed against the Palestinian people, as well as the unprecedented Israeli violations of international law and human rights law.”

According to the statement, these violations include targeting civilians and infrastructure, using siege and blockade tactics, attempting forced displacement, and killing and injuring tens of thousands of innocent Palestinians.

The Arab leaders in their statement also condemn the extension of Israeli aggression to Rafah city in Palestine, stressing that the city has become a refuge for over a million displaced persons and that any military operations in this area would have devastating humanitarian consequences.

In addition, they denounced the fact that Israel has seized control of the Palestinian side of the Rafah crossing to tighten the siege on Gaza and prevent humanitarian aid from crossing the border into the strip.

The Arab leaders also strongly condemned Israeli settlers' targeting of humanitarian and media organizations in Gaza and their attacks on aid convoys – including the recent attacks on Jordanian aid convoys – along with the failure of Israeli authorities to fulfil their legal responsibility to protect these convoys.

They also called for an immediate international investigation into these attacks, and they urged the international community and influential powers to transcend political calculations and double standards and to fulfil their fundamental and legal responsibilities by reigning in Israel’s aggressiveness and blatant violations of international and humanitarian law.

The leaders further called, according to the statement, for activating relevant international bodies to conduct independent, impartial investigations and hold accountable those responsible for the crimes committed against the Palestinian people since the start of the Israeli aggression on Gaza.

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