A top United Nations (UN) official warned on Thursday that another war will break out in Gaza, calling on Israel to lift its "blockade" and for Hamas – the terrorist organization with the genocide of Jews written in its charter – to stop fighting.
The UN also called for an additional $705 million in humanitarian aid to Gaza and Palestinian Authority (PA) held Judea and Samaria, with most of it for Gaza which was highly damaged in Hamas's third full-blown terror war on Israel last summer.
"Right now, things are not going well, and we're very concerned about the possibility of a further conflict," James Rawley, UN humanitarian chief for the Palestinian territories, told AFP. "But it's not inevitable…as long as several things happen."
"To have a complete recovery of Gaza, even to go back to where we were in July (before the 50-day conflict) requires more than construction material going in. It requires a lifting of the blockade," said Rawley.
Despite the talk of a blockade, Israel has been allowing in goods, although it has limited construction materials after transferring in several shipments that were immediately used to rebuild Hamas terror tunnels into Israel meant to attack civilians.
"In parallel, we have to see a commitment from the militant groups in Gaza to stop firing rockets at civilians in Israel…and Palestinian reconciliation moving forward" to reassure donors that building materials were not falling into the hands of terrorists, he added – despite documented evidence that the materials are indeed being co-opted by the terrorist rulers of Gaza.
UN calls for a "hudna"
Rawley called for a "reconstruction hudna (truce) for three to five years" to allow rehabilitation of the increasingly unstable coastal enclave.
Meanwhile the UN, at a news conference in Ramallah, said 75% of the additional aid it needs would be destined for Gaza, while the rest would be allocated to Judea and Samaria.
Delivery of building materials to reconstruct damaged homes had increased significantly after a slow start, Rawley said, with "good cooperation" from Israel, which controls two of Gaza's three crossings. Egypt controls the third.
Egypt should open the Rafah crossing, which has mostly been shut during and since the conflict, for medical patients and aid, Rawley said. He did not discuss the mass expulsion Egypt is conducting in southern Gaza to create a buffer zone on the Sinai border.
Rawley also called to implement the unity deal between the PA's Fatah and Hamas which torpedoed peace talks last April, as the two dispute over who controls Gaza's internal checkpoints.
"We also need to see…progress on intra-Palestinian reconciliation…and instill donor confidence, including by having just one Palestinian presence at the border crossings," he said.
But PA Deputy Prime Minister Mohammed Mustafa dismissed reconciliation as the principle concern for stability in Gaza, as the two rival factions remain in their shaky "unity."
"I think reconciliation will help, but I don't think it's the problem today," he told the Ramallah news conference. "The real test" would be to ensure funding and bring in more construction material, he added, brushing aside concerns about their misappropriation.