Statement on the current violence in the Holy LandOctober 10, 2023
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‘Whoever’s missiles landed in the grounds of Al Ahli Hospital, one thing is clear – it is the innocent who ultimately bear the heaviest burden.’
October 24th, 2023: At a critical moment for the Middle East and the world, H.E. Dr. Ambassador Beresford-Hill addressed the Security Council, appealing for solidarity and peace to save the innocent and prevent more lives being lost. He emphasized the Order’s unique position as a non-partisan and inclusive entity and drew attention to the fact that we were founded in the Holy Land 900 years ago and have a deep and abiding concern for the welfare of all who live there. In addressing the deeply divisive issues which have led to the recent confrontation, he passionately called for an end to the calculated violence inflicted upon both Jewish and Moslem communities.
Highlighting the numerous medical operations conducted by the Order in the Middle East, he illustrated the critical breaking point approaching in Gaza due to consistent attacks on healthcare facilities, the degradation of infrastructure and shortage of essential provisions. Ambassador Beresford-Hill poignantly emphasized that the people in Gaza merely yearn for an end to this situation, as “it is the innocent who ultimately bear the heaviest burden.” He elaborated on our role in representing the sick and impoverished worldwide, which impels us to call upon members of the Security Council to shift their focus toward ending the hostilities in their current form while transcending sectarian and geo-political divisions.
In his concluding remarks, Ambassador Beresford-Hill placed the responsibility for de-escalating this deadly conflict squarely in the hands of the Security Council members. He appealed to them to seek a path to peace founded on justice and the humanitarian principles outlined in the UN Charter, with the goal of ending the suffering of the innocent. He ended his intervention by drawing parallels between the three Abrahamic faiths, emphasizing that the God of all three faiths is not only a God of benevolence, of love and of compassion, but is above all a God of forgiveness. The Ambassador’s message was that the path to peace can only be found through forgiveness.