New Delhi: India’s Deputy Permanent Representative (DPR) to the United Nations, Ambassador R. Ravindra, on Wednesday, highlighted India’s efforts to provide humanitarian assistance to the civilians in Gaza, who are suffering from the ongoing war between Israel and Hamas. He made the statement while representing India at the United Nations Security Council Open-debate on the “situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian question”.
He thanked the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) for holding the open debate on the latest round of violence in West Asia, and expressed India’s deep concern over the worsening security situation and the massive loss of civilian lives in the conflict. He said that India was equally alarmed by the growing humanitarian crisis in Gaza.
“India has sent 38 tons of humanitarian goods, including medicines and equipment, to the people of Palestine. We also urge the parties to work towards creating conditions necessary for peace and for restarting direct negotiations, including through de-escalation and issuing violence,” Ravindra said.
He said that the escalation of hostilities in the region had only worsened the dire humanitarian situation, and had once again exposed the fragility of the ceasefire.
India’s Solidarity With Israel And Palestine
Ravindra also condemned the terror attacks that took place on October 7 in Israel, which killed more than 1,400 people. He said that India was shocked by these attacks and denounced them unequivocally. He said that Prime Minister Narendra Modi was one of the first global leaders to convey his condolences over the loss of lives and “prayers for the innocent victims and their families”.
“We stood in solidarity with Israel at their moment of crisis when they were facing these terror attacks,” Ravindra said. He also expressed deep shock at the tragic loss of lives at the Al Hali hospital in Gaza, where hundreds of civilians were killed and thousands injured. He offered his heartfelt condolences to the families of the victims and prayers for the speedy recovery of the injured.
He said that PM Modi had also said that those involved in the attack “must be held responsible”, and noted that the civilian casualties in the ongoing conflict were a matter of serious and continuing concern. He urged all parties to protect civilians, especially women and children.
“The unfolding humanitarian crisis needs to be addressed. We welcome the efforts of the international community for de-escalation and delivery of humanitarian goods to the people of Gaza,” he said.
India’s Support For A Two-State Solution
Ravindra also reaffirmed India’s support for a two-state solution to the Israel-Palestine issue, which he said could lead to the establishment of a sovereign, independent and viable state of Palestine, living within secure and recognized borders, side by side in peace with Israel, taking into account the legitimate security concerns of Israel.
“Towards this, we reiterate the need for an early resumption of direct peace negotiations. We also continue to support the Palestinian people through our bilateral development partnership, which covers a wide range of sectors including health, education, women’s empowerment, entrepreneurship and information technology,” Ravindra said.
He added that India was also supporting grassroots Palestinian institutions in their development initiatives. “In these challenging times, India will continue to send humanitarian assistance to the people of Palestine,” India’s deputy permanent envoy to the UN said.
He stated that the current escalation of the conflict had once again underscored the need for immediate resumption of credible, direct negotiations between Israel and Palestine. “Every effort must be made to create conducive conditions for the resumption of these talks. We welcome all efforts of regional and global players aimed towards restoring normalcy,” he said.