40 NGOs call for UN emergency meeting to stop Israeli attacks on Gaza
Smoke rises after an attack of Israeli aircraft in the south of Gaza City - REUTERS
By AYA SAMIR

CAIRO: More than 40 Egyptian human rights organizations issued a joint statement Saturday condemning ongoing Israeli airstrikes in Gaza and calling on the U.N. Human Rights Council to hold an emergency meeting to end the violence.

“Again, the U.N. system assures it utter failure to protect human rights and Palestinians in the occupied land, and reviles its weak mechanisms to force Israel to respect the basic rights of civilians and humans,” the joint statement said.

The joint statement was signed by Maat Foundation for Peace, Development and Human Rights, the Freedoms and Immunities Center, the Development and Institutionalization Support Center, Equality Center for Human Rights and the Seza Nabarawy Law Center among others.

The NGOs said in their statement Israel is “conducting collective punishment against Palestinians, violating all human rights charters and international humanitarian law.”

In related news, the Euro-mid Observer for Human Rights issued a statement Friday saying that every three minutes, Gaza is exposed to new military attacks, which “target children, women and civilians.”

“The Israeli forces targeted an entire family at dawn on Friday by bombing their home without previous warning. Five members of the Ghannam family in Rafah, in the south of the Gaza Strip, have been killed in the attack, including a 7-year-old child,” the statement read.

Other human rights figures have also condemned the attacks on Gaza, calling for real international action to stop the bombings.

“The Israeli actions are violating the most important right, which is the right of living itself,” said Ahmed Hagag, the head of the international relations committee in the Egyptian National Council for Human Rights (NCHR) in comments reported by Youm7 Thursday. “The NCHR along with the Arab League will call very soon for a press conference that will submit our decisions to stop Israeli military action over Gaza.”

Reuters reported Saturday that the death toll in Gaza had risen to 115 on the fifth straight day of Israeli attacks there.

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