We, local and regional leaders from UCLG-MEWA constituency, convened to discuss the intensifying situation in Gaza and adopt a statement on this humanitarian crisis, during the UCLG World Council 2023 in Konya.

“The Attacks by Hamas did not happen in a vacuum. The Palestinian people have been subjected to 56 years of suffocating occupation.”
António Guterres, UN Secretary-General, 24 October 2023

We express our concerns and solidarity with the people of Gaza, who have been under continuous military siege imposed by Israel since 2005.

We condemn recent attacks on civilians in the strongest terms. We call for the immediate, unconditional ceasefire amidst indiscriminate Israeli attacks on civilians and civilian infrastructure in Gaza and the guarantee of access to medical and humanitarian aid and support. We call for the mutual release of captives held on both sides. We strongly condemn the forced relocation of thousands of Palestinian people from North Gaza without any guarantees of their safety or the possibility of a return.

We also immediately need to address the rising violence against Palestinian civilians in the Occupied Palestinian Territories in the West Bank, which escalated after the current crisis in Gaza.

Only a negotiated peace that fulfills the long-held vision of a Two-State solution based on pre-1967 Borders and with East Jerusalem as the Palestinian capital, in line with United Nations resolutions – can bring long-term stability to the people of this land and the wider Middle East region.

You can reach the original text of the Statement here.

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