Child rights organisation Save the Children New Zealand today welcomed a joint statement, alongside Australia and Canada, signed by Prime Minister Christopher Luxon calling for “urgent international efforts towards a sustainable ceasefire” in Gaza.
Save the Children also welcomes the New Zealand Government backing this call with action by voting for a resolution calling for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire at the United Nations General Assembly.
With more than 18,000 people – including over 7,000 children – killed in Gaza in the last two months according to the Ministry of Health in Gaza, and those who have survived facing catastrophic conditions without access to enough clean water, food or medical supplies, the urgency of this call cannot be overstated.
“Every day we do not have an immediate and permanent ceasefire more civilians and children will die,” says Save the Children New Zealand’s Advocacy Director Jacqui Southey.
“Today we learnt the devastating news that a Save the Children staff member, his wife, four children and many other members of his extended family had been killed following an Israeli airstrike on Sunday 10 December or Monday 11 December.”
“Our staff are experienced humanitarian responders but today they are also among those in need of protection and support. Like all civilians in Gaza, many have been forced from their homes, seen loved ones killed, and are cut off from what they need to survive.
“This call for a ceasefire from the New Zealand Government, alongside Australia and Canada, cannot come soon enough. The continued bombing of Gaza by Israeli forces is causing untold suffering among the civilian population in Gaza. Too many families have been killed, too many communities ripped apart. Thousands of others in Gaza have been killed. Enough is enough. We urgently reiterate our call for a definitive ceasefire.”
By casting its vote at the United Nations General Assembly this morning, New Zealand joins 152 countries across the world that are calling for an immediate and permanent ceasefire. The voice for humanity is growing louder and more urgent by the day.
New Zealand must now use all political means available to stop the indiscriminate bombing killing children, women and their families in Gaza by pushing for a permanent and lasting ceasefire, an end to the siege on lifesaving humanitarian aid, and the full protection and safety of civilians in accordance with International Humanitarian Law and human rights.
Save the Children has been providing essential services and support to Palestinian children impacted by the ongoing conflict since 1953 and has had a permanent presence in the occupied Palestinian territory since 1973. We are present in the West Bank and Gaza.