GAZA, (PIC)– The Israeli occupation destroyed Palestinian lives in the blockaded Gaza Strip, the United Nations Chief Ban Ki-moon said Tuesday. “I am honored to be in Gaza once again,” said the U.N. Chief during a press conference in Gaza. “The Palestinians in Gaza have a very special place in my heart.” “I have personally witnessed the ravages of war and have been profoundly moved by the resilience and determination of the Palestinian people. They have stood up and rebuilt their lives in the face of staggering obstacles and hardships,” he added. “I just had the privilege of visiting a rehabilitation hospital generously donated by the government of Qatar. I thank all donors for their support in the reconstruction effort,” Ban Ki-moon stated. “But so much more needs to be done. We can help rebuild houses. But can we rebuild lives? Can we help those who have suffered the terror of war deal with the deep scars that violence leaves behind? Can we ensure that accountability is upheld and the victims of conflict feel a profound sense of justice?” the U.N. Chief wondered. “Can we create jobs and prosperity so that peace is sustainable?” “I know what it is to live as a displaced person on the move with no home, in fear for your life and your own future,” the statement further read. “I stand with the people of Gaza to say that the United Nations will always be with you,” he vowed. “They are enduring enormously difficult living conditions. The closure of Gaza suffocates its people, stifles its economy and impedes reconstruction efforts. It is a collective punishment for which there must be accountability,” said Ban Ki-moon as he slammed the tough Israeli siege on Gaza. “Today, some 70 percent of the population is in need of humanitarian assistance, and over half of Gaza’s youth have little to no job prospects or horizons of hope,” he added. In Ki-moon’s terms “this situation cannot continue” for “it feeds anger and despair” and “increases the danger of a new escalation of hostilities, which can only bring further suffering to the people of Gaza.” “We need to speak openly of the challenges and the unacceptable difficulties that the people of Gaza face; of the humiliation of the occupation and the closures, but also of the division between Gaza and the West Bank,” he added. “The United Nations will continue to work for a future without occupation and oppression; with dignity and democracy,” he further pledged.
(Source / 29.06.2016)