By Stefanos Evripidou
THE PALESTINIAN Ambassador to Cyprus Walid Hasan on Tuesday called for a political process to end the “outrageous genocide” against the Palestinian people.
Speaking after meeting with EDEK’s MEP Demetris Papadakis and Costis Efstathiou, Hasan expressed hope that the 72-hour ceasefire between Hamas and Israel on Tuesday will pave the way for a political process that will “end this outrageous genocide of our people, and most importantly, result in the lifting of the illegal and inhumane blockade of Gaza, and finally end the cruel 47-year Israeli occupation of Palestine”.
He hoped the Israeli government enters negotiations with sincere will “to reach a just, comprehensive and lasting peace that today is needed more than ever”.
The ambassador accused Israel of nearly a month of military aggression against the Palestinian people in Gaza “under the false and immoral pretext of self-defence, with Israel even having the audacity of accusing the Palestinian resistance of using its own children as human shields, in order to justify its criminal acts and mass murder of our people”.
Hasan regretted that some states have chosen to accept the “fallacious claims” of Israel that invoked the right of self-defence to justify its “criminal campaign” against the Palestinian people. These states “have kept silent and paralysed in view of this criminal genocide”, he said, adding, “Israel, as the occupying power, cannot claim to act in self-defence.”
According to Hasan, the death toll has reached almost 1,900 people, the majority of whom are innocent elderly, women and children, while more than 9,500 people have been injured. In addition, there has been major destruction of vital civilian infrastructure, including at least 5,500 civilian homes, Gaza’s only power plant, water and sewage networks, 141 schools and at least 24 medical centres, he said.
Efstathiou and Papadakis expressed their party`s solidarity towards the Palestinian people and their deep sorrow for the killings of innocent civilians, especially children. At the same time, they expressed their discomfort with the stance of the Cyprus government and its “silence” on the matter.
They said that both the Cyprus people and the Palestinians, with whom they share deep and close ties, are fighting for the same principles of democracy, freedom, human rights and a life without a foreign army and oppression.
By Stefanos Evripidou