'Genocide' in Gaza, not war: Yechury at solidarity protest

PTI | New Delhi | Updated: 01-06-2024 16:20 IST | Created: 01-06-2024 16:20 IST
'Genocide' in Gaza, not war: Yechury at solidarity protest
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Israel's ongoing offensive in Gaza is ''not a war, but a genocide'', CPI(M) general secretary Sitaram Yechury said on Saturday during a protest in solidarity with Palestine held at Delhi's Jantar Mantar.

Communist Party of India (Marxist) and other Left organisations demanded an immediate ceasefire in Gaza, and also accused the BJP-led government of supporting Israel.

''What is happening is not a war, but a genocide. War is between two armies, both sides have weapons. Here, the attack is on unarmed people. This is unacceptable,'' Yechury said.

''When we were students, it used to be written on passports that it is not valid for Israel and South Africa...'' he said, adding ''the Modi government has come on its knees to support Netanyahu... The whole world should create pressure on Israel to stop the offensive,'' he said.

He said the current Modi regime is ''deviating from the time-tested foreign policy of our country of allying with the Palestinian cause'', and added that Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu must be tried by the ICJ for ''war crimes''.

Delhi Deputy Mayor and Aam Aadmi Party leader Aaley Mohammad Iqbal also participated in the protest.

Representatives of the Pragatisheel Mahila Sangathan, Janwadi Mahila Samiti, SFI, DYFI, AIDSO, KYS, AISA, CPI(ML-New Democracy), CITU, Daha and Collective spoke at the protest.

The protesters displayed placards demanding a ceasefire, stopping the supply of arms to Israel, an end to the violence, and also raised slogans in support of Palestine.

Palestinians in the border city of Rafah have reported heavy fighting in recent days as Israel's military widened its offensive in the south, seizing control of the entire length of Gaza's border with Egypt. Fighting in Rafah has spurred more than 10 lakh Palestinians to flee, most of whom had already been displaced earlier in the war. They now seek refuge in makeshift tent camps and other war-ravaged areas, where they lack shelter, food, water and other essentials for survival, the United Nations said.

Israel launched its war in Gaza after Hamas' October 7 attack in which militants stormed into southern Israel, killed about 1,200 people and abducted about 250. Israel says around 100 hostages are still captive in Gaza.

Around 36,000 Palestinians have been killed so far, according to the official figures of Gaza's Health Ministry.

Israel has faced condemnation for strikes on the southern Gaza city of Rafah that local health officials said killed at least 45 Palestinians, including displaced people living in tents that were engulfed by fire.

The strike caused widespread outrage, including from some of Israel's closest allies. Israel's Prime Minister Netanyahu said it was the result of a ''tragic mishap''.

''The heartbreaking loss of civilian lives in the displacement camp in Rafah is a matter of deep concern for us,'' India's External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Randhir Jaiswal said on Thursday. He also called for respecting international humanitarian law in the ongoing conflict.

India has been calling for de-escalation of the situation and creating conditions for an early resumption of direct peace negotiations towards a two-state solution to the Palestine issue.

(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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