Pakistan's Human Rights Minister Shireen Mazari says ongoing Israeli violence on Palestine is not a conflict but a massacre by an "occupation power," calling on UN to prevent Israel's "state terrorism" in West Bank and Gaza.

Mourners carry the bodies of Palestinians, including members of Abu Hatab family, who were killed in Israeli violence, during their funeral at the Beach refugee camp, in Gaza on May 15, 2021.
Mourners carry the bodies of Palestinians, including members of Abu Hatab family, who were killed in Israeli violence, during their funeral at the Beach refugee camp, in Gaza on May 15, 2021. (Reuters)

A top Pakistani minister has urged UN chief Antonio Guterres to call Israeli aggression against Palestine a "massacre" not "conflict,"  as Israeli warplanes continued to bomb and destroy civilian and residential sites in besieged Gaza.

"With respect honorable SG [Secretary General of UN] this is not a conflict but a massacre by an occupation power and UN needs to enforce its responsibility to protect the Palestinian people against Israel's state terrorism," Shireen Mazari wrote on Twitter on Saturday. 

She was replying to UN chief Antonio Guterres' tweet that called for "de-escalation" and "cessation of hostilities" in Gaza and Israel.

"This conflict can only increase radicalisation and extremism in the whole region," Guterres wrote.

"Remember Ch(arter) VII of UN Charter!" Mazari added, referring to section of the document allowing for the UN Security Council to determine the existence of any threat to the peace, or act of aggression, and to take military and nonmilitary action to restore international peace and security.

World's largest open-air prison

Israeli attacks on blockaded Gaza killed 10 more Palestinians early on Saturday, bringing the death toll to 139, along with 950 wounded, according to Gaza's Health Ministry.

Tensions have been running high in the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood of the occupied East Jerusalem and at the Al Aqsa Mosque since the Muslim holy month of Ramadan, as Israeli forces and settlers assaulted Palestinians.

Tensions spread from occupied East Jerusalem to blockaded Gaza after Palestinian resistance groups there vowed to retaliate against Israeli assaults on Al Aqsa Mosque and Sheikh Jarrah if they were not halted.

Israel occupied East Jerusalem, where Al Aqsa is located, during the 1967 Arab-Israeli war. It annexed the entire city in 1980, in a move never recognised by the international community.

Israel and Egypt have imposed a crippling blockade on Gaza from land, air and sea. Rights groups say the blockade is a form of collective punishment.

The closures have devastated Gaza's economy. Unemployment hovers at around 50 percent, power outages are frequent and the tap water is badly polluted.

Palestinians face heavy movement restrictions that make it difficult to travel abroad for work, study or to visit family, and often refer to Gaza as the world's largest open-air prison.

Source: AA