UN chief calls for ceasefire

UN chief calls for ceasefire

NEW YORK (Reuters): UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Saturday he was surprised by Israel’s escalation of the bombardments in Gaza, and repeated a call for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire for the delivery of aid.

“I was encouraged in the last days by what seemed to be a growing consensus in the international community … for the need of at least a humanitarian pause in the fighting,” Guterres said in a statement. UNSG Antonio Guterres reiterated his appeal for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire, unconditional release of hostages, and delivery of relief at a level corresponding to the “dramatic needs of the people in Gaza, where a humanitarian catastrophe is unfolding in front of our eyes”.

Regrettably, instead of the pause, I was surprised by an unprecedented escalation of the bombardments and their devastating impacts, undermining the referred humanitarian objectives,” he said.

“Given the breakdown in communications, I am also extremely concerned about the UN staff who are in Gaza to deliver humanitarian assistance,” Guterres said on Saturday. “This situation must be reversed.”