India welcomes efforts for humanitarian pauses in Israel-Hamas conflict

India welcomes efforts for humanitarian pauses in Israel-Hamas conflict

United Nations, Nov 21 (PTI) India has underlined the need for all parties to work towards an early restoration of peace and stability in the Middle East, as it welcomed efforts for humanitarian pauses in the Israel-Hamas conflict and for de-escalation and delivery of urgent humanitarian assistance to the Palestinian people.

Speaking at the informal meeting of the plenary in the UN General Assembly on a briefing on the humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip, India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Ruchira Kamboj on Monday stressed that the message from the Indian leadership has been “clear and consistent.” “India welcomes all efforts by the international community that strive towards the de-escalation of conflict and enables the delivery of urgent humanitarian assistance to the people of Palestine,” Kamboj said.

Underlining India’s consistent position of achieving a just, peaceful and lasting solution to the Israel-Palestine issue, Kamboj said: “India has always advocated the resumption of direct negotiations towards establishing a sovereign, independent and viable state of Palestine, living within secure and recognized borders side by side at peace with Israel.” In 1988, India became one of the first countries to recognize the Palestinian State. In 1996, India opened its Representative Office in Gaza, which was later shifted to Ramallah in 2003, as per India’s Ministry of External Affairs.

Over 1,200 persons, mostly civilians, have been killed in Israel since the October 7 attack by the Hamas militants, who have ruled the Gaza strip since 2007. More than 11,000 persons have been killed in the retaliatory attack by Israel, which has prompted more than two-thirds of the Gaza population - of approximately 2.3 million - to flee their homes.

“We are firmly opposed to terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, clearly against violence and are on the side of adherence to international humanitarian law and ensuring that further escalation is prevented, humanitarian aid delivery continues, all hostages are released unconditionally and all parties work towards an early restoration of peace and stability,” she said.

Kamboj underlined that towards this, “we also welcome efforts for humanitarian pauses.” Overcoming deadlock, the UNSC on November 15 adopted a resolution calling for urgent humanitarian pauses throughout Gaza to allow humanitarian access.

The adoption of the resolution came after four failed attempts last month in the Council to take action on allowing humanitarian access in the Israel-Hamas conflict. It was, however, rejected by Israel almost immediately.

Meanwhile, media reports suggested that Israel, the United States and Qatar, which mediates with Hamas, have been negotiating for weeks over a hostage release that would be paired with a temporary cease-fire and the entry of more humanitarian aid.

Kamboj underscored India’s commitment to providing humanitarian aid to the people of Palestine, including delivering 70 tonnes of disaster relief materials. These include 17 tonnes of medicines and medical supplies in two tranches, adding that India’s humanitarian support will continue.

Similarly, India continues to play an active role as a member of the Advisory Commission of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), she said. PTI YAS PY NPK AKJ NPK NPK

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