Situation Report: Gaza Conflict


October 26, 2023

Situation:

On October 7, Hamas launched horrific attacks that resulted in the killing of hundreds of Israeli civilians. Counter attacks by the State of Israel killed thousands more Palestinian civilians in Gaza, further threatening extremely vulnerable communities.

The 2.2 million residents of Gaza are not able to leave Gaza, and the State of Israel has cut off water, electricity, fuel, medical supplies and food and continues to launch major military attacks in areas populated by civilians. Since October 21, a small amount of humanitarian aid has been allowed to enter Gaza (according to the United Nations as of October 25, 62 truckloads had entered Gaza, compared to a daily average of 500 truckloads prior to the hostilities).

According to the United Nations, as of October 25, the number of people killed in Gaza has exceeded 6,547 and more than 17,439 people have been injured.

CWS Response:

CWS is partnering with ACT Alliance and other partners to provide immediate, life-saving emergency support and to restore access to basic services for the people affected by the conflict in Gaza, Jerusalem and the West Bank. The humanitarian crisis continues to escalate, and there is profound need for humanitarian supplies, medicine, fuel and clean water.

On October 12, CWS condemned all attacks on civilians by Hamas and the State of Israel and called for the safe release of all hostages taken by Hamas and an end to all violence. On October 18, CWS called for an immediate ceasefire and the end of the blockade on Gaza to ensure urgent access to humanitarian supplies including food, medicine and fuel in Gaza as violence continued to escalate during the conflict between Hamas and the State of Israel. CWS was among 26 Church-based denominations and organizations to address a letter to Congress calling for a ceasefire, protection of civilians and release of hostages.

CWS administers the Ecumenical Accompaniment Program in Palestine and Israel U.S. program (EAPPI), which for 20 years has sent people to be human rights observers in Palestine and Israel. Through protective presence and advocacy, EAPPI is committed to an end to the occupation and encourages a peaceful and just resolution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict in accordance with international law and U.N. resolutions. Invite an Ecumenical Accompanier to speak with your congregation or community and support EAPPI here.

How to Help

Donations for the humanitarian response can be made online or sent to Church World Service (P.O. Box 968, Elkhart, IN 46515)

CWS is a member of the ACT Alliance, a global coalition of churches and agencies engaged in development, humanitarian assistance and advocacy.