At UN office: Hopeful and Hopeless - Youth From Palestine

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At UN office: Hopeful and Hopeless

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At UN office: Hopeful and Hopeless
By: Bahaa N. Abu Shammala
Gaza has been tremendously suffering for more than 12 years from the Israeli-led blockade, which causes the denial of basic needs, goods, food, medicines, infrastructure materials, and access to education. The Israeli occupation has imposed a suffocating siege on the Gaza Strip since 2006.
During the past decade, the people of Gaza have been experiencing dire humanitarian conditions that have been deteriorating considerably during 2017 and 2018.
The current state of the Strip.
The current state of the Gaza Strip is as follows: the unemployment rate in Gaza has now hit 42.7%, making it the highest worldwide. Israel’is cut off forced Gazans to adapt with just 4 to 6 hours of power per day; 90% of the water is undrinkable, and 29.2% of the Gazans live below the poverty line. 8500 children suffer from psychological trauma and require specialized support. Gaza’s hospitals suffer from a severe shortage of medicine and lack of fuel for emergency power generators. The Israeli occupation denies patients with chronic and serious diseases to have access to treatment out of the Gaza Strip.
[ A picture of the tent where we launched our campaign, taken by AbdelKarim AlKahlout. ]

All of this had encouraged us, the Palestinian activists, to launch the “#GazaToUN” campaign to highlight the plight and suffering of the Palestinians to the UN General Assembly and the world. Therefore, we decided to set up a tent, in which we launched our campaign on Monday, September 9th, 2018 in front of the UNSCO headquarters in Gaza. Many Palestinian activists participated, with local press agencies also present.

[ A picture of our visit with Gernot Sauer, taken by Reem Al-Hadad ]

After the campaign activities had finished, we, four activists and I, accompanied the moderator of the campaign, Mr. Mohamad Redwan, to visit the Head of UNESCO Gaza, Mr. Gernot Sauer, to ask him to deliver our message to the UN General Assembly.

As one of the members of this delegation who visited Mr. Gernot Sauer, I felt both hopeful and hopeless at the same time as we asked him to pass on our message.
Hopeful, because Mr. Sauer was kind and hosted us with a kind smile; shook our hands, listened to us carefully, wrote down our concerns and promised to deliver our message to the headquarters of the UN, saying he would do his best to pass it to the UN General Assembly. Honestly, I thought people like Mr. Sauer wouldn’t smile, but his humbleness was enough to change my mind.
“We are working day and night to find solutions for the Gaza crisis, including the deteriorating political, economic and social situation,” he said. Mr. Sauer has already given me a hope that has made me look forward to a bright future for Gaza and its people.

Hopeless, because according to the information that was sent to NSC by the Communist Worker and Peasants Party of Pakistan, taken from the UN Council meetings and resolutions passed, there have been 61 resolutions that condemn Israel but have been vetoed by the United States, so far. The United States of America, which is a charter member of the United Nations and one of five permanent members of the UN Security Council, has a full complicity with the Israeli policies in occupying Palestine throughout the history. So, I supposed that our complaints have already been reached the UN General Assembly, and after searching, they affirmed that Gaza has been under an Israeli-led suffocating siege for the past 12 years. Then recognized that every member has a responsibility to do his part to save Gaza, and provide a future more than survival. Then America came and vetoed. So now, I’m hopeless.

Mixed feelings that I have, one tells that your dreams of freedom, breaking the siege, ending the occupation could be achieved, and others tell that you would never survive this plight and suffering caused mainly by Israel’s siege.

So, should I become hopeful or hopeless whilst America completely cut its aids to UNRWA that serves more 5.4 million Palestinian refugees in Palestine, including 1.4 million live in Gaza Strip?

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