The ICRC had assisted in the transfer of Israeli and foreign captives from Gaza as well as the Palestinian detainees from Israeli prisons under a temporary truce mediated by Qatar and Egypt.
The head of the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC), Mirjana Spoljaric, on Tuesday described the ongoing war on Gaza as the world’s “moral failure”, calling for a deal to end the fighting, Reuters reported.
“I have been speaking of moral failure because every day this continues is a day more where the international community hasn’t proven capable of ending such high levels of suffering and this will have an impact on generations not only in Gaza,” Spoljaric told reporters in Geneva, as quoted by the news agency.
The ICRC chief’s comments came after she concluded visits to the West Bank, Gaza and Israel where she met with Israeli and Palestinian officials “to discuss efforts to assist communities suffering from the effects of conflict.”
Speaking to reporters, Spoljaric stressed that “there’s nothing without an agreement by the two sides” in Gaza, urging all parties to engage in negotiations to release Israeli hostages.
“We continue to talk to all sides to then be ready to operationalise the agreement that they reach,” Spoljaric said.
The ICRC assisted in the transfer of Israeli and foreign captives from Gaza as well as the Palestinian detainees from Israeli prisons under a temporary truce mediated by Qatar and Egypt.
The truce that began on November 24 and was renewed twice, ultimately ending on December 1 and lasting seven days.
The pause led to the release of 110 Israeli and foreign captives from Gaza, according to a Doha News tally. As part of the deal, Israel released 240 Palestinian women and children from Israeli prisons.
Israel resumed its genocidal war on Gaza after the truce expired on Friday, December 1, while advancing deeper into the Palestinian enclave. Israel believes there are still 129 hostages in Gaza.
Israel had said on December 2 that it pulled out its negotiators from talks with Qatar, Egypt and the United States over a renewed pause, declaring an impasse in the negotiations.
Tel Aviv then appeared to backtrack on its decision on Saturday with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu saying he was still speaking to Qatar and Egypt “regarding negotiations to release the hostages.”
Meanwhile, Hamas responded to Netanyahu’s latest remarks on Saturday evening by renewing its rejection of negotiations without the complete halt of the Israeli war on Gaza.
The negotiations have appeared to gain momentum this week with reports pointing to a meeting between Qatar and the parties involved in the war on Gaza.
A source privy to the matter told Reuters on Tuesday that the talks were “positive” though no deal is imminent following a fresh meeting between the relevant parties reportedly took place in Poland.
Qatar has yet to publicly comment on the reported meeting.
Israel’s genocide on Gaza intensified for 10 weeks straight, creating a catastrophic humanitarian situation in the besieged coastal enclave.
Since October 7, Israel has killed more than 19,650 Palestinians and wounded 52,600 others in Gaza, Palestine’s health ministry said on Wednesday.
Euro-Med reported a much higher figure on Tuesday of 26,612, including 10,305 children and those who are presumed dead under the rubble.
The war internally displaced 1.9 million Palestinians in Gaza and completely destroyed 63,920 homes, the European agency added.
Speaking from Gaza on December 4, the ICRC chief said the situation inside the besieged enclave was “shocking.”
“I’ve just visited the European Gaza hospital and the things I saw there are beyond anything that anyone should be in a position to describe. What shocked me the most were the children with atrocious injuries and at the same time having lost their parents with no one looking after them,” she said at the time of her previous visit.