loader image

A Call for Action in Gaza: AfAS Emphasises the Need for Humanitarian Aid, Educational Institution Protection, and Ceasefire

We at AfAS assert the imperative need for the observance of human rights conventions in the midst of the dire situation faced by the civilian population in Gaza. We urgently call for the establishment of a humanitarian ceasefire to allow for relief to reach them. We denounce the forced displacement of a million people from Northern Gaza’s strip, which is contrary to all the humanitarian rules, and we emphatically emphasise that institutions of higher learning as well as schools and educational centres, should be spared from targeting. We express deep regret over the destruction of Al-Azhar University and the Islamic University last week.

Our heartfelt sympathies are with the Palestinian academics and students from Gaza’s seven universities, who are enduring the hardships of war, with hundreds among them killed and injured. Currently, 80,000 students and academics there are facing extremely dire conditions and displacement, many of them already refugees from previous conflicts dating back to 1948.

We reiterate our condemnation of violence from any party, including the civilian killings on the 7th of October. The conflict has now escalated to genocidal proportions against Gaza’s population, and it should be stopped. This enduring conflict, which has spanned 56 years, has deprived the Palestinian people of their fundamental rights to freedom and dignity. We call for an end to the occupation of the Palestinian territories as mandated by various UN resolutions.

On behalf of The Executive Committee of the African Astronomical Society (AfAS)