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Palestinians Unmet Presence: Echoes of Destruction, Calls for Action

Palestine's environmental officials were denied entry to the ongoing UN Climate Summit in Dubai.

At the ongoing UN Climate Summit in Dubai, Palestine’s environmental representatives faced hurdles in attending, citing communication barriers and casualties due to ongoing conflicts. 

The absence of crucial voices from Palestine, including environmental experts, resonates deeply amidst the escalating crisis.

Ravaged Projects and Environmental Catastrophe:

Hadeel Ikhmais, head of Climate Change at Palestine’s Environment Quality Authority, lamented the destruction of vital climate resilience projects in Gaza, including internationally-funded water treatment and irrigation initiatives. 

The devastation has exacerbated the region’s environmental challenges, notably the scarcity of potable water—a consequence of prolonged conflict and neglect.

Climate Talks Overshadowed by Conflict:

Before losing contact with ground personnel, the Palestine delegation intended to contribute to discussions on climate action plans and emissions reduction. 

However, the current situation, described as a “genocide,” has shifted priorities from climate negotiations to urgent humanitarian concerns.

Calls for Ceasefire and Global Solidarity:

Amidst the environmental discourse at COP28, a network of climate justice organizations advocated for a permanent ceasefire and increased humanitarian aid in Gaza. 

International solidarity with Palestine emerged as a focal point, transcending climate talks to address the human rights crisis in the region.

Integrating Human Rights into Climate Justice:

Activists at COP28 emphasized the interconnectedness of climate justice and human rights. Lidy Nacpil highlighted the conference’s significance in amplifying calls for a ceasefire, asserting that addressing Palestine’s plight is fundamental to fighting climate justice and human rights worldwide.

Climate activists underscored the urgency of the situation in Palestine, condemning the resumption of bombings and urging accountability from the countries involved. 

Chennaiah Poguri drew attention to the disparity between military spending and climate commitments, calling for an immediate end to hostilities.

A Plea for Global Support:

Hadeel Ikhmais appealed to COP28 attendees to leverage their positions to advocate for a permanent ceasefire in Gaza. 

Urging governments to pressure Israel towards peace, she emphasized the dual importance of protecting the environment and preserving human lives in the region.

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