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Israeli military, Hamas form list of children offenders in UN report

12:46 AM Jun 10, 2024 IST | GK NEWS SERVICE
israeli military  hamas form list of children offenders in un report

New Delhi, June 9: United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has included Israel's military in a global list of offenders committing violations against children, confirmed by his spokesperson on Friday.


Israel, along with Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad, has been added to the list in Guterres' annual report on children in armed conflict, which will be presented to the UN Security Council next Friday.


The Israeli mission to the UN was informed of the inclusion by Guterres’ chief of staff, a standard practice for newly listed countries to prevent leaks, according to UN spokesperson Stephane Dujarric.


In response, Israeli Ambassador to the UN Gilad Erdan expressed outrage in a social media video, defending the IDF as “the most moral army in the world” and criticizing Guterres for allegedly incentivising terrorists.


Dujarric condemned Erdan's publication of the private call, noting its unprecedented nature in his 24 years with the organization.


The UN spokesperson Stephane Dujarric on Friday in a regular press briefing said, “ ...On the issue regarding the children and armed conflict report, and all the news that’s been broken out in the last hours especially.


The annual report of the Secretary-General on children and armed conflict is due to go to the Security Council on 14 June, which is next Friday; that is the day that is scheduled and asked for by the Security Council. As per usual practice, an advance copy will be delivered to Security Council members on that date.


The report will be officially published on 18 June, with a press conference by Virginia Gamba, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative on the issue. The report will then be discussed in an open debate that will take place on 26 June.

And just to remind you about the context of the report, this is an initiative of Member States — more specifically of Security Council Members — who have tasked Secretaries-General to report annually on this, based on a well-established methodology.”

The UN spokesperson further added, “Earlier today, our chief of staff, Courtenay Rattray, called the Permanent Representative of Israel, Gilad Erdan. The call was a courtesy afforded to countries that are newly listed in the annex of the report. It is done to give those countries a heads-up and avoid leaks.

Ambassador Erdan’s video recording of that phone call and the partial release of that recording on Twitter, is shocking and unacceptable and, frankly, something that I’ve never seen in my 24 years serving this Organization.”

When asked about the UN Secretary General’s response to Israel's statement “The UN has put itself today on the blacklist of history when it joined those who support the Hamas murderers. The IDF (Israel Defence Forces) is the world’s most moral army, and no preposterous UN decision can change that.”

The UN spokesperson replied, “This report comes every year at the request of the Security Council. The Security Council created this mechanism. Every year, it is based on a very well-established, transparent methodology which is explained on the children and armed conflict website. Taking a step back, I think the Secretary-General has been very clear in speaking out since 7 October on issues of violations of international law, on issues of violation of human rights, which includes the condemning of the terror attacks by Hamas. “

The inclusion of Israel follows eight months of intense conflict in Gaza, resulting in over 15,500 child fatalities according to Gaza's Ministry of Health. The conflict was triggered by a Hamas-led assault on Israel on October 7, which killed 1,200 people and resulted in about 250 hostages being taken. Many hostages remain in captivity, and Hamas leaders are still at large.

The UN blacklist has historically included countries such as Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen.

The annual report on children and armed conflict will be officially published on June 18 and discussed in an open debate at the Security Council on June 26. Virginia Gamba, the Secretary-General’s Special Representative on the issue, will hold a press conference on the report.