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UN Humanitarian Chief Urges Reversal of Funding Suspension for UNRWA Amid Allegations 

The UN’s humanitarian chief, Martin Griffiths, expressed profound concern over allegations that 12 out of 13,000 employees of the UN aid agency for Palestinians were involved in the October 7 attacks by Hamas on Israel. Taking swift action, the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East launched an investigation.

Griffiths emphasized that the alleged actions of a few individuals should not compromise the agency’s vital services to over three-quarters of Gaza’s residents. Urging the international community, he called for the revocation of decisions to withhold funds from UNRWA, stressing that the humanitarian response for the Occupied Palestinian Territory hinges on the agency being adequately funded and operational.

In a Security Council meeting addressing the latest developments in Gaza, Griffiths painted a dire picture of the humanitarian situation. He underscored the growing levels of deprivation and desperation, stating that each passing day deepens the misery and suffering of the people in Gaza.

The ongoing intense fighting near Nasser and Al-Amal hospitals in Khan Younis poses a severe threat to healthcare workers, the injured, the sick, and the displaced seeking shelter there.

Throughout Gaza, over 60 percent of homes are reported to be destroyed or damaged, with approximately 75 percent of the population displaced. Living conditions are described as abominable and worsening daily.

Heavy rainfall compounds the challenges, flooding tents and forcing families, including children and the elderly, to endure sleeping in the mud. Clean water is nearly unavailable, and outbreaks of preventable diseases are spreading due to inadequate public health support.

Griffiths highlighted the frequent rejection by Israel of much-needed items into Gaza, citing unclear, inconsistent, and often unspecified reasons. Urgent steps are required to ensure the safety of aid workers, establish mechanisms for a predictable flow of supplies, and facilitate rapid, unfettered access to the territory.

Reiterating his previous demands, Griffiths called for full compliance with international humanitarian law, a ceasefire, and the immediate release of all hostages, urging the Security Council to exert every effort to bring an end to this tragic situation.

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