UN Secretary-General Voices Concern on Possible Israeli Assault on Rafah

New York, MINA – UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres voiced concern on Tuesday about a possible Israeli assault on Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip, Anadolu Agency reports.

“My sincere hope is that the negotiations for the release of hostages and some form of cessation of hostilities to be successful to avoid all-out offensive over Rafah where the core of the humanitarian system is located and that would have devastating consequences,” Guterres told reporters ahead of a UN Security Council meeting.

His remarks came after a four-way meeting, attended by representatives from Egypt, the US, Israel and Qatar, began Tuesday in Cairo to discuss a truce in Gaza.

“I am particularly worried with the deteriorating conditions and security for humanitarian aid delivery in Gaza. “There is a breakdown in public order. At the same time, we have restrictions imposed by Israel that are not improved and limit humanitarian distribution,” said Guterres.

“The conflicting mechanisms to protect humanitarian aid delivery in relation to military operations are “not effective,” he added.

Guterres said he is “troubled” by the number of journalists that have been killed in the conflicts.

“Freedom of press is a fundamental condition for people to be able to know what’s really happening everywhere in the world,” he said.

Israel has pounded the Gaza Strip since the 7 October Hamas attack, killing at least 28,340 people and injuring 67,984 others, while nearly 1,200 Israelis are believed to have been killed in the Hamas attack.

The Israeli war on Gaza has pushed 85 per cen of the territory’s population into internal displacement amid acute shortages of food, clean water and medicine, while 60 per cent of the enclave’s infrastructure has been damaged or destroyed, according to the UN. (T/RE1/P2)

Mi’raj News Agency (MINA)