British humanitarian expert urges Rishi Sunak to lead the way on supporting those stricken in the Middle East

GAZA, PALESTINE, 07.10.2023: CONFLICT-ISRAEL-PALESTINE - Damage caused by the Israeli offensive in the city of Gaza, Palestine, this Saturday (7). Fighters from the Islamic extremist group Hamas launched raids in several locations in southern Israel, where they carried out massacres of civilians and soldiers, as well as hostages. It was the largest military action against the Jewish State since the invasion by Arab forces in the Yom Kippur War, which began 50 years ago on Friday (6). Just like in that episode, there was a serious failure by the Israeli intelligence services. (Photo: Muhammed Abu Oun/Thenews2/Folhapress) (Foto: Muhammed Abu Aoun/Thenews2/Deposit Photos)

“The most important thing is that civilians can be evacuated safely and get access to the vital essentials they need.”

BRITAIN must play a leading role in delivering humanitarian aid to the innocent victims of the escalating crisis in the Middle East, a leading expert has said. 

Shameet Thakkar praised the Prime Minister’s response to the escalating situation, but warned more support will be needed in the days and weeks ahead.

Mr Thakkar, founder of Unimed Procurement Services, which partners with purpose-led organisations to source and deliver diagnostic equipment to countries in need, said: “It’s devastating to see innocent civilians dying as the result of a political conflict. It’s essential that both sides allow passage for other countries to supply humanitarian aid to those in need, as according to International Humanitarian Law.” 

“To this point, we’re in full support of the World Health Organisations spokespersons recent comments that the delivery of aid to Gaza “must happen”. As the WHO has stated hospitals are overwhelmed, people cannot get treatment, children with burns have no pain relief – it’s absolutely critical”. 

“This aligns with Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s recent call to Israel and Egypt to open the Rafah border crossing to allow urgently needed humanitarian aid supplies to pass through.”

“The most important thing is that civilians can be evacuated to safety and get access to the vital essentials they need. We need to make sure everyone affected has appropriate access to housing, food, water, electricity and medical supplies.”

“The hospitals are in a mess right now and it’s important to think about the deeper consequences of not having access to vital resources, aside from the obvious issues. Lack of electricity can cause serious issues with vital medical supplies, just for example Insulin must be refrigerated to be preserved and no electricity means this is not possible, meaning those who need it to survive will not have it. This is just one example of many devastating issues caused by the lack of vital supplies that most people would not even consider.”

“The focus of every nation right now should be on getting vital humanitarian aid to the innocent civilians who are in desperate need.”

His comments came as the World Health Organization said it needed urgent access to the Gaza Strip to deliver medical supplies and aid as all access remained closed, including via Egypt’s Rafah crossing in the southHundreds of thousands of people have arrived in Khan Younis in southern Gaza after Israel told 1.1 million people to go south ahead of an expected ground invasion. An Israeli military spokesman has denied there’s a humanitarian crisis, despite desperate scenes in Gaza and warnings from the UN as Israel blocks supplies of food, water, fuel, and electricity. Several world leaders have confirmed they’re heading to the region – including US President Joe Biden, and Germany’s Olaf Scholz.

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