News Release

* The Lancet: State Parties to the Genocide Convention Must Act * UNSC Resolution

Share

AP reports in “The UN says more than 1 in 4 people in Gaza are starving because of war” that “It doesn’t get any worse,’ said Arif Husain, chief economist for the U.N.’s World Food Program. ‘I have never seen something at the scale that is happening in Gaza. And at this speed.'”

ALIX FADDOUL, alix.faddoul@uni-heidelberg.de, @alixfdl
Faddoul is one of the co-authors of a piece published in The Lancet on December 18, 2023, “The health dimensions of violence in Palestine: a call to prevent genocide,” which states: “In just over nine weeks, more than 18,205 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza, along with 265 people killed in the West Bank. Designated protected spaces such as hospitals and schools have not been spared. More than 49,500 people have been injured, many of whom are at severe risk of long-term disability or death. Repeated exposure to conflict and violence, including witnessing and experiencing housing demolition, combined with Israel’s siege of Gaza since 2007, is already known to be associated with high levels of psychological distress among Palestinians. Exposure to violence, ongoing mass displacement (with almost 1.9 million internally displaced), and the destruction or damage of 60 percent of Gaza’s housing, has the potential to exacerbate mental health issues. Life-sustaining infrastructure, including bakeries and water facilities, have also been targeted, rendering the entire Gaza population at risk of food insecurity, dehydration, and water-borne diseases. Health-care facilities in Gaza have been pervasively targeted, with each attack potentially constituting a war crime and posing a lasting threat to the viability of the health-care system. Hospital damage, alongside staff and supply shortages, hinder health care for all, including an estimated 50 000 pregnant women. The health effects on all Palestinian children, women, men, older people, people with disabilities, and people of marginalised identities are immense. … The grave risk of genocide against the Palestinian people warrants immediate — and now overdue — action.” Faddoul is with the Heidelberg Institute for Global Health, Germany. Other signers of the correspondence include Geordan Shannon, Yamina Boukari and James Smith at the University College London, Khudejha Asghar at the University of Edinburgh and Amy Neilson at the University of Sydney.

Also available for interviews are two prominent international lawyers, who state from a legal perspective that there is not simply a threat or risk of genocide to be prevented, but that it is ongoing — thus making the U.S. and other government complicit. They both condemn the U.S. government’s obstruction at the UN and urge any nation to immediately invoke the Genocide Convention at the International Court of Justice. (UN whistleblower Craig Mokhber just appeared on the Electronic Intifada, criting the just-passed UN Security Council resolution.)

FRANCIS BOYLE, fboyle@illinois.edu
Boyle is professor of international law at the University of Illinois College of Law.  Boyle’s books include The Bosnian People Charge Genocide (1996) Palestine, Palestinians and International Law (2009) and World Politics, Human Rights and International Law (2021). He was featured on the news release “On Israel: Lawyer Who Applied Genocide Convention for Bosnia Recommends it Now for Palestinians.” He said today after the UN vote: “The U.S. government is still aiding and abetting Israel’s genocide against the Palestinians by preventing a cease-fire at the Security Council. They will wait for a time to see what happens. But the Palestinians can always go back to the UN General Assembly under the Uniting for Peace Resolution whenever they want to.”

JOHN QUIGLEY, quigley.2@osu.edu    Professor emeritus of international law at Ohio State University, Quigley’s books include The Statehood of Palestine: International Law in the Middle East Conflict (Cambridge University Press) and The Ruses for War: American Interventionism Since World War II. He was featured on the recent news release “Beyond U.S. Isolation at UN, What’s Not Being Done.”

He said today: “The two abstentions by Russia and the United States will further convince” much of the world that “Russia is the more worthy of their support. They are both abstaining because the resolution does not call for a cease-fire that would stop the killing. But Russia wants the cease-fire, whereas the United States does not.”