Commenting on this week's violence in Gaza, Mike Noyes – deputy director for humanitarian policy and practice at ActionAid UK – said:
"The increased violence in Gaza threatens an already extremely fragile humanitarian situation. Some 11 years into Israel’s blockade, ordinary Gazans struggle to survive – and women and girls are particularly vulnerable. Families are still living in homes badly damaged by earlier bombing, and have little access to clean water or electricity. Sewage pumps are failing, and hospitals are struggling to cope – especially given an increase in casualties this week.
"Women and girls are disproportionately affected by this ongoing crisis, with heightened pressure on mothers struggling to hold the household together, and girls out of school and at risk of early marriage. ActionAid works to support women in Gaza to earn an income, and with girls to help overcome trauma so they can return to school, and understand their rights.
"We condemn all indiscriminate violence against people, whoever the perpetrator, and welcome the call made by Prime Minister Theresa May for an independent and transparent investigation into these events. Now more than ever, we must see an end to the blockade. We urge the international community to work together to find a long-term, peaceful solution, to end the harm and suffering endured by women and children and ensure everyone in the region can live as equals."
Notes to editors
1. ActionAid is an international charity working with women and girls in 45 countries around the world.