صدى البلد البلد سبورت قناة صدى البلد صدى البلد جامعات صدى البلد عقارات
Supervisor Elham AbolFateh
Editor in Chief Mohamed Wadie

Guterres Devastated over Inability of UN to Safeguard Staff in Gaza


Fri 07 Jun 2024 | 12:29 PM
UN Chief
UN Chief
Ahmed Emam

In a solemn ceremony held at the United Nations Headquarters in New York, the Organization paid tribute to and honored the 188 individuals who lost their lives while serving in 2023.

Among them were 135 men and women who were part of the UN agency providing assistance to Palestine refugees (UNRWA) and tragically lost their lives during Israeli military operations in Gaza since October 7th. Many of them, along with their families and the communities they served, were victims of these operations.

Secretary-General António Guterres expressed his deep concern over the highest number of personnel casualties in a single conflict or natural disaster since the establishment of the United Nations, emphasizing that such a reality is unacceptable. He reiterated his call for full accountability for these deaths.

"We owe it to their families, friends, colleagues, and the world to ensure that those responsible are held accountable. Our UNRWA personnel lived and died as representatives of the international community in Gaza, and it is crucial that the community receives a thorough explanation," stated Secretary-General Guterres.

In the Trusteeship Council, where the iconic statue of a girl stands, symbolizing "Mankind and Hope" with her arms raised towards a bird in flight, the names of the fallen were solemnly read out. The inclusion of their names in the ceremony was done with the consent of their family members, as per the institution's rules. However, only 22 families of UNRWA personnel could be contacted due to the unfortunate circumstances caused by Israeli military operations.

"Regrettably, we were unable to reach many of the family members of our UNRWA colleagues, as they have either been killed or displaced from their homes due to the Israeli military operations," expressed Mr. Guterres.

The remaining UNRWA personnel were honored by mentioning their professional titles during the ceremony. Mr. Guterres highlighted that they were teachers, drivers, doctors, sanitation workers, guards, pharmacists, administrative assistants, and more. They were not only colleagues but also friends, mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, husbands, and wives.