The Irish Association of Social Workers (IASW) deplores the recent and ongoing deep suffering and loss of life visited on the people of Israel and Palestine. IASW condemns all acts of terrorism and war crimes committed in the ongoing conflict, especially the targeting, killing and injuring of civilians, including men, women and especially children. The withdrawal of vital life resources, including food, water, electricity and fuel, the bombing of densely populated areas, the forced displacement of civilians, the abduction of men, women and children, the taking of hostages and the killing and injury of so many children in particular, all constitute war crimes. The denial of basic necessities to those in Gaza , along with restricted access to medical care and humanitarian aid, is a clear infringement on their fundamental human rights, in violation of International Human Rights Law. The resulting humanitarian crisis impacts most severely on the well-being and survival of the most vulnerable in the population: including women, children, people with disabilities, elderly people and people with medical needs who are reliant on access to medical care.
The impact of the actions of the past ten days is already enormous, as those on both sides of the conflict mourn their losses and struggle to deal with its traumatic outfall. While feelings in the region are now greatly intensified and it appears that the situation is deteriorating inexorably, we call for an immediate end to the violence and for the restoration of opportunities to provide humanitarian relief to those who need it, to begin to repair the terrible damage already done and work towards building a lasting peace in the region.
The social work profession is founded on a fundamental respect for basic human rights, social justice, and the right of all people and communities to live in freedom, with self-determination. Irish social workers echo the appeals of bereaved Israeli and Palestinian families who have called for an end to war and the immediate start of peace negotiations. As well as calling for an immediate end to the current hostilities, we urge all those in a position to do so, to take the necessary steps to broker and enable real peace in the region. We stand with all those impacted and affected by the current conflict and send our support to victims of the war in both Palestine and Israel.
IASW also sends our heartfelt support to our social work colleagues in both Palestine and Israel, as they continue to work to respond to the deepening humanitarian crisis, and we support the recent statement from the International Federation of Social Workers (IFSW):
Chair of IASW
IASW Spokesperson: Vivian Geiran via office on 086 0241055