Thank you, Mr. President, 

And thank you to Special Coordinator Tor Wennesland for his presentation and for all of his efforts.

Switzerland is outraged by last Sunday's events in the Middle East. 

We strongly condemn the indiscriminate firing of rockets by Hamas against Israel, as happened on Sunday May 26. We recall that indiscriminate attacks constitute violations of international humanitarian law. 

Switzerland strongly condemns the Israeli strike which, according to the UN, caused dozens of civilian casualties, including many children, in a camp for displaced persons in Rafah on the same Sunday evening and we express our sincere condolences to the families. We recall that international humanitarian law requires parties to distinguish between civilians and combatants, and between civilian objects and military objectives. It also requires parties to take all feasible precautions to spare the civilian population and avoid damage to civilian objects. 

Civilians in Gaza are living in unacceptable conditions, unprotected by repeated displacement, starvation and incessant hostilities. 

Switzerland reiterates its opposition to the current military operation in Rafah and its call for an immediate ceasefire. 

The new provisional measures adopted by the International Court of Justice on May 24 require Israel to halt its military offensive in the Rafah governorate. Switzerland recalls that these orders are binding on all parties. We expect Israel to comply and take the necessary measures.

Furthermore, this Council must ensure the implementation of the three resolutions it has adopted since the acts of terror of October 7, which Switzerland has strongly condemned. Resolutions 2712, 2720 and 2728 require the parties to fulfill their obligations under international humanitarian law. 

This includes the obligation to protect civilians and to allow and facilitate the safe, rapid and unhindered delivery of humanitarian aid to civilians. Humanitarian aid entering Gaza remains largely insufficient. Aid must be able to be delivered through all crossing points and reach the whole of the Gaza Strip - as also required by the ICJ. 

Finally, respect for international law also means the immediate and unconditional release of all hostages.

Mr. President,

The situation in the West Bank also deserves the full attention of this Council.

In an already tense context, we urge the leaders of all parties to refrain from inflammatory language, provocations and unilateral measures that could lead to further escalation. We reiterate the need to respect the historic status quo of the holy sites in Jerusalem, and Jordan's custodial role in this regard.

Violence and civilian deaths, also in the West Bank, continue to break appalling records. 

Switzerland condemns the violence perpetrated by Israeli settlers - including against UNRWA offices in East Jerusalem and humanitarian aid convoys in the West Bank. Last Friday, this Council adopted resolution 2730. This resolution reaffirms the obligation of States and parties to conflicts to respect and protect humanitarian personnel and property. This of course also applies to the distribution centers in Gaza, which must not be looted, as we have just heard. 

We also recall that the use of force during law enforcement operations, as in Jenin last week, must in particular meet the criteria of necessity and proportionality, and protect every individual’s right to life and security of person.

In conclusion, Switzerland reiterates that respect for international law and the resolutions of this Council are sine qua non conditions for de-escalation and a first step towards the establishment of a lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians.

We reiterate our firm support for the negotiated two-state solution, with Israel and Palestine, of which Gaza is an integral part, living side by side in peace and security within secure and recognized borders. 

Thank you.