UN agency chief Philippe Lazzarini has revealed that the Middle East is on the “edge of an abyss” as a result of the war between Israel and Hamas.
The commissioner-general of UN relief agency UNRWA while sharing his view on BBC said violence could spill over across the region.
After calling again for humanitarian aid corridors into the territory, he warned about the dire situation for civilians inside Gaza.
According to Mr Lazzarini he fears “the world is now losing its humanity” considering the dimension the Israel-Hamas war has taken, stressing the need for humanitarian aid corridors.
Meanwhile, the head of UNRWA has condemned Hamas’s attack on Israel. He has also tagged it a “horrific and barbaric massacre” that had created a “national trauma, a collective trauma in Israel”.
“But this event still does not justify that the war is conducted without any restraint,” he said. “And I do not believe that killing even more civilians is in the interest of the future security and peace here in the region.”
In the words of Mr Lazzarini, “Listen, we are now in a situation where there is a total siege being imposed in the Gaza Strip.
“We are in a situation where more than a million people have been asked to be displaced. So this amounts to collective punishment, and collective punishment is a violation of international humanitarian law.”
“We call to the Israelis and to anyone relevant in this conflict to respect international humanitarian law. There is no exception for anyone,” he added.
Speaking about the growing humanitarian crisis in Gaza, Mr Lazzarini said 2.2 million Palestinians, half of whom have been displaced, are “basically lacking everything”.
“There is no water. You have four toilets for 4,000 people. They are living on the floor,” he said. “We are on the brink.”
“If there is no water anymore in the Gaza Strip, things will accelerate. And the disaster which is already unfolding under our eyes, will become even worse,” Mr Lazzarini said.
The UN has previously warned of a “humanitarian catastrophe” unless aid can get into Gaza.
Mr Lazzarini said that before Hamas’s attack on 7 October, around 500 trucks a day would carry aid, fuel and other goods into the Strip.
Now, he said, it is unclear how much aid they need to send or what they will even be allowed to take in – but estimated the agency would need “at least 100 trucks a day” for Gazans.