Palestinian Ambassador’s mother killed in Israeli attack
PALESTINE Ambassador to Zimbabwe Dr Tamer Almassri’s mother has been killed in Khan Younis city in the Gaza Strip following an attack by Israeli forces.
The killing of Ambassador Almassri’s mother on Tuesday is a continuation of Israel’s war against Palestine, which has been deliberately targeting women and children, including those taking refuge in hospitals.
From October 7 up to yesterday afternoon, Israel had killed 16 248 Palestinians in Gaza, with over 70 percent of the victims being women and children.
Palestine Embassy in Zimbabwe media and public relations officer, Mr Munyaradzi Munaro, confirmed the killing of Ambassador Almassri’s mother.
“With deep sorrow and grief, I regret to inform you that the mother of the Ambassador of Palestine Dr Tamer Almassri, was martyred on Tuesday afternoon due to the Israeli apartheid occupation army’s savage and indiscriminate bombardment of their residential area in Khan Younis.
“May Allah the Almighty, give her mercy and accept her in the highest levels of paradise and bestow on her family solace, patience and comfort for their loss.
“To Allah we belong and unto him we return. May her soul rest in peace,” said Mr Munaro.
Khan Younis is a city in the southern Gaza Strip. Ambassador Almassri’s mother was in Zimbabwe for about nine months from last year until May this year.
She had diplomatic residence as a member of Ambassador Almassri’s family.
Senior Government and ZANU PF officials and other private individuals, have sent condolence messages to Ambassador Almassri.
Yesterday, the Israeli army moved its tanks towards the centre of Khan Younis city, where it launched fierce attacks on Palestinians.
This followed a night of non-stop attacks on the city which killed several people.
A UN special rapporteur has said the “massacre of civilians must be stopped”, as Gaza hospitals struggle to cope with a surge in the number of Palestinians needing urgent, and at times sophisticated care.
The call by the US special rapporteur follows intense attacks by Israeli forces in central and southern Gaza, with dozens killed in Israeli air attacks on Deir el-Balah.
Despite repeated calls from most of the progressive world to stop the war, Israel’s military yesterday said it was engaging in ground operations in Khan Younis.
The United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) says it expects the number of displaced people in Rafah to increase to more than a million in the coming days, with tens of thousands already sleeping in the streets and aid deliveries extremely inadequate.
Spokesperson for the Palestine Red Crescent Society, Ms Nebal Farsakh, yesterday said “being a Palestinian now means you have to choose between the bad and the worse”. She said for those in Gaza, it is a constant struggle for safety and basic needs such as food and water, as places to shelter from Israeli army bombing dwindle.
“Yesterday (Tuesday) thousands of Palestinians in Khan Younis who are sheltering in the Palestine Red Crescent, they have left towards Rafah, while at the same time, thousands of others came in their places,” she said, adding that “there is no safe place” to flee in Gaza.
“From what we see on the ground, most Palestinians are struggling to have one meal with very basic things; it’s a miracle to have food for your family.”
US Secretary-General Mr Antonio Guterres has now invoked what is widely considered to be the most powerful diplomatic tool at his disposal.
In a letter to the UN Security Council, Mr Guterres invoked Article 99 of the UN Charter, which states that “the Secretary-General may bring to the attention of the Security Council any matter which in his opinion may threaten the maintenance of international peace and security”.
The letter represents the first time Mr Guterres has invoked the article since he took over the role of UN secretary-general on January 1, 2017.
In the letter, Mr Guterres calls for the Security Council to press to avert a humanitarian catastrophe and appeals for a humanitarian ceasefire to be declared in Gaza. — Additional reporting: Al Jazeera