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UN Blacklists Israel for Violations against Children in Conflict

9 Jun 2024 01:22

Islam Times - The United Nations added Israel to its “blacklist” of countries committing abuses against children in armed conflict.

In a social media post on Friday, the Israeli regime's ambassador to the UN, Gilad Erdan, stated that he received official notification of UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres's decision.

"This is simply outrageous and wrong," Erdan wrote, alongside a video of him speaking into a telephone and condemning the move.

"I responded to the shameful decision and said that our army is the most moral in the world. The only one being blacklisted is the Secretary General who incentivizes and encourages terrorism and is motivated by hatred towards Israel."

Commenting on Erdan’s remarks later in the day, Guterres’s spokesperson Stephane Dujarric said a UN official had called the Israeli envoy as "a courtesy afforded to countries that are newly listed on the annexe" of the annual "Children in Armed Conflict" report.

"It is done to give those countries a heads-up and avoid leaks," Dujarric told reporters, adding that the report is set to be presented to the UN Security Council on June 14 and then officially published a few days later.

"Ambassador Erdan’s video recording of that phone call, and the partial release of that recording on Twitter, is shocking and unacceptable – and frankly something I’ve never seen in my 24 years serving this organization," Dujarric said.

Around 15,000 Palestinian children have been killed in the past eight months during the Israeli military’s continued assault on the Gaza Strip.

Rights groups have condemned the dire toll Israel’s bombardment and siege of Gaza has had on Palestinian children across the enclave.

An Israeli air attack on a home in the Sheikh Radwan neighborhood of Gaza City, northern Gaza, has killed at least four people and injured 14 more on Saturday. Most of the injured were women and children, according to Wafa.

More than 36,700 Palestinians have been killed in Israeli attacks since early October, including 15,571 children, according to the Gaza government media office.

UN experts have also said Israel’s restrictions on deliveries of food, water, medicine, and other critical supplies have created a humanitarian crisis, with parts of the coastal territory facing the threat of famine.

Earlier this week, the UN’s child rights agency UNICEF said nine in 10 Palestinian children in Gaza were living in "severe child food poverty, surviving on diets comprising two or fewer food groups per day – one of the highest percentages ever recorded."

By comparison, in 2020, only 13 percent of children in the Gaza Strip were living in severe child food poverty, UNICEF said.

For years, Israel has fought hard to be kept off the list despite countless incidents of abuse and killings of Palestinian children.

Daesh (ISIL or ISIS)  and Boko Haram are just some of the parties to conflict that have been named in previous years.

While being included on the list will not have any immediate consequences for Israel, it could have political and diplomatic ramifications, further isolating Israel from the rest of the world.

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