New York, 26 October 2023 (TDI): During the tenth emergency special session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), Ambassador Riyad Mansour of the Permanent Observer Mission of the State of Palestine to the United Nations made a series of thought-provoking statements.
He began by highlighting the devastating impact of Israel’s actions, stating that over 40% of all Palestinian homes have been destroyed, leaving millions of Palestinians with no homes to return to.
Ambassador Mansour then raised an important question about the unequal empathy shown to Israelis and Palestinians.
He questioned whether this disparity in international response was related to matters of faith or the color of one’s skin, shedding light on the complex dynamics at play in the ongoing conflict.
Moving on to the situation in Gaza, he urged everyone present to remember that even as they gathered for the session, the people of Gaza were enduring airstrikes.
This served as a stark reminder of the immediate and life-threatening challenges faced by Palestinians in the region.
In his final statement, Ambassador Mansour drew attention to the grim statistics of the conflict, emphasizing that 70% of those who had lost their lives were women and children.
He challenged the international community to examine the morality of defending a war with such devastating consequences, sparking a critical reflection on the ongoing conflict and its impact on innocent civilians.
Riyad Mansour addressed the United Nations, acknowledging Israel’s recent statements in the UN Security Council concerning the suffering of its people.
In response, he emphasized that Palestinians are also enduring immense suffering. Israel’s representative had called for the release of hostages, likening it to holding two million Palestinians hostage.
Mansour drew attention to the tragic toll of the conflict, with an alarming statistic: 1,000 Palestinians are killed daily.
He emphasized that no circumstances could justify war crimes and crimes against humanity, making a passionate plea for an urgent cessation of the killing.
He pointed out that attempting to justify Israel’s actions was regressive and detrimental to the situation.
Mansour also underscored the remarkable resilience of Palestinians, who have endured decades of occupation, 16 years of blockade, and five wars in Gaza.
He emphasized that the answer to the Israeli and Palestinian conflict is not further violence but rather a commitment to upholding UN principles and ensuring a peaceful future for coming generations.
He asserted that justice for the Palestinian people is the only viable path forward, urging the UN membership to vote to end the violence and the prevailing double standards.
Mansour implored the international community to choose justice over vengeance and peace over further conflict, emphasizing the urgency of the situation.
In an emotional plea, Mansour highlighted the ongoing suffering in Gaza, where civilians are enduring airstrikes and destruction.
He stressed the need for immediate action to prevent further loss of life, calling for humanitarian aid to alleviate the dire situation. Hospitals in Gaza are operating without essential supplies, and the population is living in constant fear.
Mansour urged the UN to act swiftly to save lives, emphasizing that there is no time to mourn the victims and that action is needed to prevent further loss of life.
He implored the international community to provide the necessary assistance and bring an end to the ongoing crisis, which he described as “just too much.”