The European Trade Union Network for Justice in Palestine condemns the devastating violence in Israel and Gaza in recent days. We stand in solidarity with workers in Israel and Palestine whose lives have been shattered by these appalling events and offer our condolences to all those who grieve for the loss of family and friends.

The appalling crimes perpetrated against civilians in Israel and the collective punishment of civilians in Gaza are grave violations of international law. They are worsening the crisis for millions of Palestinians in Gaza and the West Bank, exacerbating tensions in the region and represent a further setback for the prospects of peace and an end to the settler-colonial occupation.

For over 7 days now the people of Gaza have been under the most intense Israeli bombardment targeting homes, markets, schools and universities, hospitals, and infrastructure. Entire families have, again, been whipped off the face of the earth. So far more than 1,400 Palestinians, mostly civilians, have been killed and more than 6,250 injured.

This morning, Israel ordered 1.1 million Palestinians to “evacuate” the northern half of the occupied Gaza Strip, prompting UN officials to warn of an impending and unprecedented catastrophe.

The World Health Orgasization (WHO) has asked Israel to cancel its evacuation order, saying that forcing vulnerable patients to evacuate hospitals in Gaza amounted to a “death sentence.”

We join the international trade union movement in urging Hamas and the Israeli government to respect international law and call on European governments to ensure that human and workers’ rights are respected and United Nations conventions fully implemented.

We call for an immediate ceasefire, UN protection for Palestinians in Gaza now and allowance for humanitarian aid to be delivered immediately.