UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Türk at 55 HRC on OPT 1
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Edited News

UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Türk at 55 HRC on OPT.

There appear to be no bounds to – nor words to capture - the horrors that are unfolding before our eyes in Gaza,” Türk said.

 

Today, the total number of people killed has exceeded 30,000. And tens of thousands of people are missing, many presumed buried under the rubble of their homes. This is carnage, the High Commissioner said.

 

The war in Gaza must end. Clear violations of international human rights and humanitarian laws, including war crimes and possibly other crimes under international law, have been committed by all parties. It is time – well past time – for peace, investigation and accountability,” he said.

 

The UN Human Rights Office report makes for very painful reading, Türk said. Thousands of tonnes of munitions have been dropped by Israel on Gaza, including repeated use of explosive weapons with wide-area effects.

 

In Egypt's Arish hospital, last November, I saw children whose flesh had been seared. I will never forget this,” he said.

 

Regarding the possibility of an Israeli operation on Rafah, the High Commissioner said he failed to see how such an operation could be consistent with the binding provisional measures issued by the International Court of Justice.

 

Let me be absolutely clear, and issue yet another stark warning. The prospect of an Israeli ground assault on Rafah would take the nightmare being inflicted on people in Gaza to a new dimension,” Türk said, calling on all States with influence to do everything within their power to avert such an outcome.

 

The report also covers the occupied West Bank, including East Jerusalem, where Israeli forces’ use of airstrikes, attack helicopters, anti-tank missiles, shoulder-fired explosive projectiles and other weapons of war, has continued to increase, with lethal results.  From 7 October to 23 February, at least 401 Palestinians in the West Bank were killed, 102 of them children. The vast majority of cases that the Office has monitored raise concerns of unlawful killings, including extra-judicial killings.  

 

Peace in the Occupied Palestinian Territory and in Israel is achievable, but for that to work, the occupation must end, the UN Human Rights Chief stressed. 

 

Israeli leaders must accept the right of Palestinians to live in an independent state. And all Palestinian factions must accept the right of Israel to exist in peace and security,” Türk said.

 

The goal is to achieve a safer, more peaceful future for all, and the war in Gaza is taking Palestinians and Israelis further from that goal every day. There must be an end to these hostilities – not only an immediate ceasefire, but an end to this war. All hostages must immediately and unconditionally be released, and the thousands of Palestinians arbitrarily detained by Israel must also be released,” the High Commissioner added.

 

Accountability must be served on all sides. A raft of measures to re-establish human rights, equality, accountability and justice must be adopted across the Occupied Palestinian Territory and Israel.  

 

 “Keeping Palestinians and their rights walled off  – "out of sight, out of mind" – has not worked in 56 years, and it can never ever work. The core challenge of building peace is for all to see and fully grasp the humanity of the other, overcoming mindsets that have been deeply engraved by generations of harm and rage, and which conceal the truth: that people – Palestinian and Israeli people – are being cruelly harmed,” the High Commissioner stressed.

 

 

For more information and media requests:

In Geneva:

Ravina Shamdasani - + 41 22 917 9169 / ravina.shamdasani@un.org 

Liz Throssell + 41 22 917 9296 / elizabeth.throssell@un.org

Jeremy Laurence - + 41 22 917 9383 / jeremy.laurence@un.org

 

 

 Tag and share - Twitter: @UNHumanRights and Facebook: unitednationshumanrights

 

 

STORY: UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Türk on the human rights situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory

TRT: 03:10

SOURCE: UNTV/ OHCHR
RESTRICTIONS: NONE
LANGUAGE: English/NATS
ASPECT RATIO: 16:9 
DATELINE:  29 February 2024 GENEVA, SWITZERLAND
 

 

SHOTLIST 

1.     Exterior shots : Palais des Nations

2.     SOUNDBITE (English)— Volker Türk, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights: There appear to be no bounds to – no words to capture - the horrors that are unfolding before our eyes in Gaza.

3.     Cut away: Room 20

4.     SOUNDBITE (English)— Volker Türk, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights:Today, the total number of people killed has exceeded 30,000. And tens of thousands of people are missing, many presumed buried under the rubble of their homes. This is carnage.

5.     Cut away: Room 20

6.     SOUNDBITE (English)— Volker Türk, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights:The war in Gaza must end. Clear violations of international human rights and humanitarian laws, including war crimes and possibly other crimes under international law, have been committed by all parties. It is time – well past time – for peace, investigation and accountability.

7.     Cut away: Room 20

8.     SOUNDBITE (English)— Volker Türk, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights: In Egypt's Arish hospital, last November, I saw children whose flesh had been seared. I will never forget this.

9.     Cut away: Room 20

10.  SOUNDBITE (English)— Volker Türk, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights: Let me be absolutely clear, and issue yet another stark warning. The prospect of an Israeli ground assault on Rafah would take the nightmare being inflicted on people in Gaza to a new dimension.

11.  Cut away: Room 20

12.  SOUNDBITE (English)— Volker Türk, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights: Israeli leaders must accept the right of Palestinians to live in an independent state. And all Palestinian factions must accept the right of Israel to exist in peace and security.

13.  Cut away: Room 20

14.  SOUNDBITE (English)— Volker Türk, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights: The goal is to achieve a safer, more peaceful future for all, and the war in Gaza is taking Palestinians and Israelis further from that goal every day. There must be an end to these hostilities – not only an immediate ceasefire, but an end to this war. All hostages must immediately and unconditionally be released, and the thousands of Palestinians arbitrarily detained by Israel must also be released.

15.  Cut away: Room 20

16.  SOUNDBITE (English)— Volker Türk, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights: Keeping Palestinians and their rights walled off  – "out of sight, out of mind" – has not worked in 56 years, and it can never ever work. The core challenge of building peace is for all to see and fully grasp the humanity of the other, overcoming mindsets that have been deeply engraved by generations of harm and rage, and which conceal the truth: that people – Palestinian and Israeli people – are being cruelly harmed.


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