Statement on Israel-Gaza Crisis

As a coalition of Christian international development agencies, we have been profoundly grieved by events that have unfolded in Israel and Gaza over the past six months.

The horrific nature of the 7 October attack, which led to the deaths of more than 1,000 people, including 695 Israeli citizens (36 of whom were children), and the taking of approximately 250 civilian and military hostages, left the world reeling.

It laid bare yet again the existential threat that Jewish people have faced throughout history, and the security risks that are part of everyday life. We join our voice in calling for the immediate release of all remaining hostages.

We also join the international call for restraint in the current Israeli response. International conventions of war require that armed forces allow adequate humanitarian aid to reach civilians. The conflict in Gaza is desperate and has already led to the deaths of more than 30,000 Palestinians, 70 per cent of them women and children. Catastrophic damage to the infrastructure and systems that residents of Gaza rely upon for power, water, food and basic medical assistance is adding to the scale and depth of the suffering. The declaration of full-blown ‘famine’ is now imminent.

As part of our new campaign calling for a Safer World for All, Micah will add its voice and advocacy to calls for greater humanitarian assistance and a ceasefire, for it is impossible to provide effective humanitarian relief without the safe movement of aid workers, medical specialists, and civilian populations.

Many of our members are assisting in the aid efforts, and praying for the families on both sides of the conflict that are grieving the horrors they have endured.

We encourage Australian Christians to join in praying for an end to hostilities, to support calls for our government to join international efforts promoting a lasting peace, and to give generously to those agencies providing material assistance.

Blessed are the peacemakers.

Micah Australia