Spokesperson for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights: Ravina Shamdasani
We are deeply concerned about the steady deterioration in the humanitarian conditions and the protection of human rights
At the height of summer, with soaring temperatures, electricity provision has not risen above six hours per day since
the beginning of the current crisis in April, and has often been under four hours. This has a grave impact on the
provision of essential health, water and sanitation services. Power outages threaten the life and well-being of
vulnerable groups, particularly those needing urgent medical care. We have observed an increasingly dire situation for
the men, women and children of Gaza amid a deepening economic crisis, coupled with continuing restrictions on movement
and freedom of expression. The desperate situation has also contributed to violent crime, domestic violence, including
femicides, and attempted suicides, although exact data is hard to obtain.
Israel, the State of Palestine and the authorities in Gaza are not meeting their obligations to promote and protect the
rights of the residents of Gaza. Israel, as the occupying power, has responsibility under international humanitarian law
to ensure the well-being of the population. Israel, the State of Palestine and the authorities in Gaza also have clear
concurrent human rights obligations towards the Palestinians in Gaza. The Israeli blockade and closure continue to
disproportionately affect the civilian population and must be lifted. The recent measures to decrease the provision of
electricity, and to cut the salaries and order early retirement of civil servants in Gaza, are having a direct, negative
impact on the social and economic rights of Gazans. The lack of transparency in the use of resources, and the continuing
suppression of freedom of speech and assembly by the authorities raise further concerns for the protection of
fundamental rights of the population in the Gaza Strip.
We urge Israel, the State of Palestine and the authorities in Gaza to uphold the human rights of the population in Gaza.
We also call on the international community to respond to the UN’s urgent appeal for humanitarian aid, to honour pledges
made to support reconstruction and development of Gaza, and to work with the parties to bring a resolution to the