ICJ imposed measures on Israel must be implemented: Shoukty to US ME special envoy

Ahram Online , Wednesday 31 Jan 2024

Egypt's Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shoukry stressed on Wednesday that Israel should implement the temporary measures imposed by the International Court of Justice (ICJ) to ensure that the urgent needs of the residents of the Gaza Strip are met immediately.

Egyptian Minister of Foreign Affairs Sameh Shoukry receives David M. Satterfield, US Special Envoy for Middle East Humanitarian Issues, in Cairo on 31 January 2024. Photo: Egyptian Foreign Ministry


In a meeting with David M. Satterfield, US Special Envoy for Middle East Humanitarian Issues, Shoukry discussed with Satterfield the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Gaza and the destruction of the Strip's infrastructure, service systems, and hospitals.

According to the Egyptian Foreign Ministry's Spokesperson, Ahmed Abu Zeid, the two officials exchanged assessments regarding the efforts to ensure the sufficient and sustainable entry of humanitarian aid into Gaza in collaboration with the UN relief agencies.

During the meeting, Shoukry pointed out the recent decision of several countries to suspend funding for the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) amid the ongoing humanitarian crisis in Gaza, stressing the adverse impact of such suspension on the agency’s ability to continue providing vital services to the Palestinians according to its UN mandate.

Hence, he urged the US side and the donor countries that suspended their funding to rescind their decision to avoid exacerbating the humanitarian crisis in Gaza while stressing the importance of waiting for the results of the internal investigation process undertaken by UNRWA and relevant UN bodies.

On Sunday, the UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres urged donor countries to guarantee the continuity of the UNRWA after several nations suspended their funding of the agency over Israeli allegations that staff members in the UNRWA participated in Hamas's Al-Aqsa Flood operation on 7 October.

Following the Israeli allegations, at least ten countries, including the US, the UK, Australia, Canada, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Finland, and Scotland, have paused aid to UNRWA.

In addition, Shoukry emphasised that international parties, including the US, should fully implement the relevant UN Security Council and General Assembly resolutions, especially Resolution No. 2720, which included establishing a UN mechanism to facilitate, monitor, and coordinate the entry of aid into the Gaza Strip. 

For his part, Satterfield expressed his appreciation for Egypt's significant role since the beginning of the crisis in providing and delivering humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip, highlighting the existing coordination between Egypt and the US on this issue.

On Tuesday, the Head of Hamas's Political Bureau, Ismail Haniyeh, said he was invited to visit Cairo to discuss a proposal drafted in Paris for a ceasefire in Gaza and explore the conditions for its implementation.

Egypt has been facilitating the delivery of humanitarian aid into the Gaza Strip through the Rafah border crossing and, recently, through the Karm Abu Salem crossing.

For nearly four months, Israel has continued its brutal war in the Gaza Strip.  The overnight and early morning assaults have resulted in 26,900 deaths and 65,949 injuries, most of whom were women and children.

The Israeli strikes have destroyed more than half of the buildings in the Strip, displacing nearly 2 million Palestinian citizens.

Since 7 October, and following a complete blockade on the Strip, Israel has allowed food, water, medicine, and fuel to trickle into Gaza, thus causing a severe shortage of necessities and services. ​

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