The United Nations’ Secretary-General António Guterres has reiterated calls for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza, saying Gaza has become “a graveyard for children.”
“The nightmare in Gaza is more than a humanitarian crisis,” Guterres said on Monday Nov. 6. “It’s a crisis of humanity.”
He said that Israel’s airstrikes and ground operations are hitting civilians, hospitals, refugee camps, mosques, churches and UN facilities, including shelters, leading to many innocent people being killed.
“No one is safe,” Guterres added.
He said that at the same time, Hamas is using civilians as human shields and continue to launch rockets indiscriminately towards Israel, reiterating his “utter condemnation of the abhorrent acts of terror perpetrated by Hamas on October 7.”
Guterres called for Hamas to release its hostages and said civilians must be protected.
He said there are clear violations of international humanitarian law, adding that no party to an armed conflict is above the rules of war.
He said Gaza is becoming a graveyard for children as hundreds of girls and boys are reportedly being killed and injured every day.
“More journalists have reportedly been killed over a four-week period than in any conflict in at least three decades. More United Nations aid workers have been killed than in any comparable period in the history of our organization,” he added.
He thanked those on-the-ground who are continuing life-saving work despite the overwhelming challenges and risks.
He concluded by repeating calls for a ceasefire, saying that all parties to the conflict, as well as the international community, have a responsibility to “stop the inhuman collective suffering” and expand humanitarian aid to Gaza.
Since Israel declared war on Hamas after it launched a surprise attack on Israel on Oct. 7, more than 10,000 Palestinians, including more than 4,000 children, have been killed in Gaza.
About 1,400 Israelis have been killed, and another 200 are being held as hostages by Hamas.