Guterres calls for long-term truce in Gaza
UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres today reiterated his call for a long-term ceasefire and the release of all hostages held by Palestinian extremists in Gaza.
In a statement released ahead of the International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People, Guterres said the Palestinians were suffering in "one of the darkest chapters" in their history.
Guterres again condemned the October 7 attacks by Hamas on Israel, which sparked the fifth and deadliest war in Gaza, but added that "it cannot justify the collective punishment of the Palestinian people."
He called for a "long-term humanitarian ceasefire, unrestricted access to aid, the release of all hostages, the protection of civilians and an end to violations of international humanitarian law."
Israel and the Palestinian Islamic Hamas, which rules Gaza, agreed as of this morning to extend a temporary ceasefire for two days and plan to exchange hostages held by the extremists and Palestinian prisoners in Israeli prisons.
Israeli leaders, however, have threatened to resume the war to destroy Hamas once the release of the hostages is halted.