The AU and the LAS released a joint statement expressing serious concern about the Israeli order that more than a million Palestinians must leave their homes, in contravention of international law, hence their call for the United Nations and the international community to stop the catastrophe “before it is too late”.
The statement highlighted the urgent need to avoid escalation and considered that an invasion by Tel Aviv would undoubtedly entail a large number of civilian victims, including women and children, which could lead to a genocide of unprecedented proportions.
“In calling on the international community to live up to shared principles of humanity and justice, both the LAS and the AU have stressed the imperative of collective action to immediately prevent prolonged aggression against the Palestinians.”
The AU and the Arab League demanded a concerted international effort to provide basic assistance and urgent humanitarian aid to 2.2 million Palestinians without access to clean water, electricity and a near collapse of the medical sector. They also called for opening a humanitarian corridor to provide basic assistance to the people of Gaza and rescue the wounded. The AU also rejected the application of collective punishments.
They stressed that, ultimately, a political solution based on the two-state vision is the only way to guarantee peace and security for all peoples and States in the region, the note concluded.
The joint statement is the result of a meeting between the president of the AU, Moussa Faki Mahamat, and the secretary general of the LAS, Aboul Gheit, last Sunday in Egypt to address “the increasingly catastrophic situation in the occupied Palestinian territories”. Mahamat reiterated the AU’s position of concern about the increase in hostilities between Israelis and Palestinians with serious consequences for civilian lives.