– Mohd Naushad Khan
New Delhi, Dec. 14: Ambassadors, former ministers, parliamentarians, religious leaders, academicians, human rights defenders and student leaders gathered under the banner of Indian Muslims for Civil Rights to participate in a seminar on Human Rights and United Nations here Tuesday.
Palestinian Ambassador to India, Adnan Abu Alhaija, while recalling Israel’s attack after October 7, said, “The world is talking of 130 hostages, but no one talks about 10,000 Palestinian hostages in the Israeli prisons, 5000 before October 7 and another 5000 thereafter. This is the hypocrisy of the United States, Britain, France, Germany and Italy. They consider entire Gaza military target and everyone there to be killed. The Palestinian people won’t die in silence; they won’t die in vain.”
Mohd Adeeb, former MP and chairman of IMCR, in his opening remarks, said, “We are with the innocent people and not with the aggressor. So many resolutions have been adopted in the UN but none has been implemented. Has the United Nations got any relevance today? I feel the credibility of the United Nations is at stake.”
Salman Khurshid, former Union Minister, remarked, “We have asked only for humanitarian ceasefire. Humanitarian ceasefire is not the end of the story. It’s the beginning of a new chapter. It is therefore necessary to give them just an iota of assurance that they can live without the fear of bombs, missiles and without the fear of a very strong army against them.”
Prof Salim Engineer, Vice-President of Jamaat-e Islami Hind said, “All those who are supporting Israel are aggressors and all those who are silent are also part of this aggression. On 10 December the world observed Human Rights Day as usual but saw it as a day of sorrow, grief, deaths and destruction in Palestine. Largescale protests across the world in defiance of their government’s objection remind us that Israel’s oppression won’t last long.”
“The sacrifice of Palestinians will give confidence to all those who have been suppressed. The blood of the innocent will not go in vain; it will be a source of freedom for the victims and oppressed,” added Prof Salim.
Sikh leader Sardar Dharam Singh said, “It’s true Palestine is under attack but it’s also a test of the Muslim world. If they strongly condemn Israel’s attack and if they are united in letter and spirit, the war will stop. The blood of innocent children of Palestine will not go in vain; it will give birth to real Islam and then generations will change.”
Mrs. Rahamathunnissa A, Chief Editor of Aura e-magazine said, “We are at a turning point in human history. We believe all aggressors won’t last long. Definitely, justice will prevail, Truth will prevail, but we will have to sacrifice. We will have to stand in solidarity.”
“We are here to raise our voice and demand nothing less than permanent ceasefire,” she stressed.
Former Chief Minister of J&K Dr Farooq Abdullah, in his presidential address, said, “The United Nations has never been successful. Instead of pinpointing America, I’m more concerned about the role of Muslim countries. The Muslim world has power if they are united. But personal interests of every country stop them from coming forward.”
Senior Leader Sitaram Yechury, Ambassador of Iran, Danish Ali MP, Prof. Akhtarul Wasey, Harsh Mandar, Shahid Siddiqui, and Aditya Nigam also addressed the gathering.
In a unanimous resolution, the seminar told the international community to implement ‘an immediate ceasefire’, that ‘killing of civilians, children and women can never be justified’, ‘hospitals, schools, UNRWA Centres/camps must be protected at all costs’, ‘collective punishment… cannot be condoned’, and urged to ‘enforce International law and uphold human rights’, and provide ‘immediate and appropriate humanitarian’ aid.
[The writer is Sub-Editor of Radiance Viewsweekly]