Palestinian ambassador to UN calls on Non-Aligned Movement to pressure Israel to enforce cease-fire

KAMPALA, Uganda (AP) — The Palestinian ambassador to the U.N. called on the members of the Non-Aligned Movement in Kampala, Uganda, to put pressure on Israel to implement a cease-fire in Gaza after 100 days of war with militant Palestinian group Hamas.

Rayid Mansour addressed in his opening speech the 120 members, convening throughout this week, that despite the U.N. General Assembly and the Security Council's resolutions, a cease-fire remained elusive.

The Non-Aligned Movement, formed during the collapse of the colonial systems and at the height of the Cold War, has played a key part in decolonization processes, according to its website.

Mansour claimed that Israel was leading an apartheid of the Palestinians in the ongoing war that broke out on Oct.7 when Hamas suddenly attacked the south of Israel, killing some 1,200 people, and taking 250 others hostage. Israel retaliated by pounding the Gaza Strip, killing nearly 24,000 people and displacing about 80% of the population.

"We are still under this colonial occupation by Israel and we see genocide committed on our people, particularly in the Gaza Strip,” he said.

He said the Palestinians were grateful to South Africa for launching a case against Israel at the International Court for Justice. “We are the last kids around the block. All of you accomplished your national independence and you put an end to colonialism."

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has previously said Israel will pursue its war against Hamas until victory and will not be stopped by anyone, including the ICJ.

Israel adamantly denies allegations of genocide in Gaza, saying it makes every effort to avoid harming civilians, and rejects allegations of apartheid as an attack on its very legitimacy.

At least 30 of the movement's members are expected to attend the heads of states' meeting at the end of the weeklong deliberations. Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni will take over as president the Azerbaijan's Ilham Aliyev for the next three years.