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  • Henry Broadbent

Large-Scale Famine, Mass Death Loom in Gaza.


A UN-backed IPC report has warned “famine is imminent” in Gaza. It states the “entire population in the Gaza Strip (2.2 million) is facing high levels of acute food insecurity”, and 1.1 million people face “catastrophic” food supply conditions. According to Catherine Russell, the Executive Director of UNICEF, the level of food insecurity for children in Gaza “isn’t just trauma, [if they survive] this is [physically] stunting them for life”. In maternity wards “babies don’t even have the energy to cry … It’s a painful, painful death for children.” 

Melanie Ward, from Medical Aid for Palestinians told CNN "This is the fastest decline in a population's nutrition status ever recorded. That means children are being starved at the fastest rate the world has ever seen." From Philippe Lazzarini, UNRWA Chief: “This man-made starvation under our watch is a stain on our collective humanity. Too much time was wasted, all land crossings must open now. Famine can be averted with political will.”

As starvation spreads across the territory, we must understand the famine is not an unintended consequence of war. It has been intentionally manufactured by Israel. In the week prior to this publication, more than 100 workers involved in distributing aid were killed by the IDF, in eight separate attacks. OXFAM has reported Israel is “actively preventing the delivery of international aid into Gaza”, halting each aid truck for an average of 20 days.

Recognition of Israel’s genocidal intent by world governments has been unforgivably sluggish, though recent events may mark a shift: Joseph Borrell, the E.U’s representative for  foreign affairs and security policy, described it as unacceptable that “starvation is [being] used as a weapon of war.” By preventing humanitarian support from entering Gaza, he said, “Israel is provoking famine”. In this context, New Zealanders must demand our government does everything in it’s power to condemn the genocide in it's strongest terms, end our own military participation, seek a permanent ceasefire, and save the Palestinian people from certain death. 


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