With deep concern over the latest hostilities in the Gaza Strip, the World Council of Churches (WCC), the Middle East Council of Churches (MECC) and ACT Alliance express their belief that the present situation in the Gaza Strip is morally and ethically untenable. We offer our heartfelt sympathies to all the victims, killed and injured and their families, over the recent intense spate of violence.
All parties to the conflict must face up to their responsibilities and their moral and legal accountability. It is imperative that they seek ways to protect the civilian population, especially women and children from recurring military confrontations that can only exacerbate an already tense situation and ongoing humanitarian crisis. It is particularly incumbent on those with the most powerful and destructive means at their disposal to exercise the highest responsibility for avoiding further catastrophes for the suffering people of Gaza.
The almost two million inhabitants of the Gaza Strip live under a state of permanent siege, denying them their basic human, economic, social and political rights. The communities around the Gaza border experience the recurring hostilities with serious repercussions to the peaceful conduct of their daily lives.
We affirm that all people are created in the image of God. We are all called upon to respect and protect the human dignity and rights of all.
We believe that the military option will never be conducive to a lasting and just resolution of the longstanding conflict. We call on all parties to work for an end to the recurring confrontations, and for a just peace that will ensure that all may live in peaceful coexistence.
WCC, MECC and ACT Alliance call upon their member churches, organisations and partners to pray for an end to this destructive violence and unconscionable suffering, and to increase their support and efforts for a just peace and human dignity in Palestine and Israel.
Geneva/Beirut 8 May, 2019
Rev. Dr Olav Fykse Tveit, general secretary of the World Council Churches of Churches
Rudelmar Bueno de Faria, general secretary of the ACT Alliance
Dr Souraya Bachelany, general secretary of the Middle East Council of Churches