Escalation of violence
Christian Aid is devastated by the escalation of violence in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territory.
Thousands of Israelis have been killed and many more injured, making it the deadliest attack in Israel in decades. Israeli civilians, including women and children, have been forcibly taken.
In Gaza, thousands have been killed and many are injured. Air strikes have caused widespread destruction of homes, schools, healthcare facilities and telecommunication installations. Already under-equipped hospitals are overwhelmed by casualties while hundreds of thousands of people have been displaced. Electricity and fuel cuts are affecting hospitals, closing food supply to shops and access to water and sanitation services. All schools are closed.
We urge all parties to abide by international law to protect innocent civilians and agree to an immediate de-escalation of this unprecedented violence. The cycle of violence will not end, and innocent people will continue to pay the price, until Palestinians and Israelis as treated as equals and the occupation of Gaza and the West Bank is ended.
Our local partners
Christian Aid has been working with the poorest and most vulnerable people in the Middle East since the early 1950s, when we provided humanitarian relief to Palestinian refugees.
Our established partners in Gaza are ready to respond with medical relief and community-led initiatives such as food, shelter, sanitation and protection.
We are monitoring the worsening situation through our partners in Gaza, who are ready to respond with medical relief and community-led initiatives.
A prayer for peace in the Middle East written by The Very Revd Canon Richard Sewell, Dean of St George's College Jerusalem.
O God of all justice and peace we cry out to you in the midst of the pain and trauma of violence and fear which prevails in the Holy Land.
Be with those who need you in these days of suffering; we pray for people of all faiths - Jews, Muslims and Christians and for all people of the land.
While we pray to you, O Lord, for an end to violence and the establishment of peace, we also call for you to bring justice and equity to the peoples.
Guide us into your kingdom where all people are treated with dignity and honour as your children for to all of us you are our Heavenly Father.
In Jesus’ name we pray.
How it got this way
Even before this latest escalation of violence, the humanitarian need in Gaza has been acute for many years due to the 16-year-old blockade enforced by Israel and Egypt and a lack of effective government in Gaza.
Across the occupied Palestinian territories, there is a sense of lawlessness and Palestinians feel hopeless. Gaza’s residents are living in incredibly harsh conditions, with soaring unemployment and poverty rates and a reliance on food aid.
Despite this, the international community has failed to step in, hold all sides to account and work to ensure a peace that secures justice, dignity and prosperity for all.