Conference on humanitarian response for Gaza held in Jordan

Amman, June 12 The UN chief, leaders of regional states, and top US diplomat gathered in Jordan, stressing the need to accelerate humanitarian aid delivery to the conflict-ridden Gaza Strip.

At a conference titled "Call for Action: Urgent Humanitarian Response for Gaza," they appealed for intensified efforts to aid the Palestinians in Gaza, Xinhua news agency reported on Tuesday.

The conference, co-organised by Jordan, Egypt, and the UN, aims to develop a collective response to the dire humanitarian situation in the enclave.

In his remarks at the conference, Egyptian President Abdel-Fattah al-Sisi welcomed Resolution 2735 adopted on Monday by the UN Security Council, which supports a comprehensive ceasefire agreement and a hostages-prisoners swap deal between Israel and Hamas, as well as the entry of sufficient and sustainable humanitarian aid into Gaza.

He called on countries to compel Israel to stop "using hunger as a weapon" in Gaza and to remove obstacles to delivering humanitarian aid to people there.

For his part, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, who also attended the conference, urged support for humanitarian aid programs presented by the Palestinian Authority and other countries to assist the afflicted Palestinian people.

"The (Palestinian) government has presented its programmes for relief, restoration of basic services, institutional reform, and financial and economic stability, and has announced its readiness to take on duties in Gaza, including all crossings into the strip, just as in the West Bank," said Abbas.

He urged the Security Council and the international community to pressure Israel to open all land crossings into Gaza and hand them over to the Palestinian government.

At the conference, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres called on the international community to support Jordan's crucial role in assisting Gaza residents and as a key regional hub for humanitarian work, praising Jordan for its relief efforts, including dispatching aid convoys, conducting airdrops, and establishing field hospitals.

Speaking at the conference, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken announced a new aid package worth more than $400 million for the Palestinians.

He also called on Hamas to accept the current ceasefire proposal, which he said "is a version of what Hamas has proposed," while urging Israel to "take further steps to minimise human casualties".

Blinken highlighted US President Joe Biden's call for an immediate ceasefire, withdrawal of all Israeli forces from Gaza, and allowance of humanitarian aid to flow.

In addition, he stressed the importance of releasing detainees, rebuilding institutions to provide services, and reconstruction of the strip, particularly its infrastructure.

Source: IANS

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