UN chief ‘horrified’ by Gaza hospital strike that killed hundreds

United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said on Wednesday he was “horrified” by the blast at a Gaza hospital that killed hundreds of people and strongly condemned the action.

Palestinian officials said an Israeli air strike hit the hospital, with the Palestinian Authority’s health minister accusing Israel of causing a “massacre”.

Speaking at the opening ceremony of the Belt and Road Forum in Beijing, Guterres said he condemned the Hamas attacks against civilians in Israel on Oct. 7 and called for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire.

“I call for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire to provide sufficient time and space to help realise my two appeals and to ease the epic human suffering we are witnessing. Too many lives and the fate of the entire region hang on the balance,” Guterres said.

Guterres was in Beijing to attend Chinese President Xi Jinping’s ambitious global infrastructure initiative with more than 20 world leaders in attendance.

Israel blamed the blast at Al-Ahli al-Arabi hospital on a failed rocket launch by the Palestinian Islamic Jihad group, which denied responsibility.