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GENEVA, July 23, 1:21 /ITAR-TASS/. The United Nations Human Rights Council will meet on Wednesday for a special session to discuss the human rights situation in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, including East Jerusalem.
A request to convene this session came from Egypt, which acted on behalf of a group of Arab state, last Friday. In line with the regulations of the United Nations Human Rights Council, in order for a special session to be convened, the support of one-third of the membership of the Council, or 16 members or more, is required. Egypt’s requested enrolled the required support, including from Russia and China.
It will be the 21st special session of the United Nations Human Rights Council since 2006, when it was formed. The session is scheduled to begin at 10:00 local time (12:00 Moscow time). Navanethem Pillay, the U.N. High Commissioner for Human Rights, will be the first to take the floor at the session. According to the press service of the U.N. Geneva office, as many as 21 members of the Council and 16 observer states wanted to speak on this matter as of Tuesday evening.
The Israeli army launched its Operation Protective Edge against militants of the Hamas radical Islamic movement in the Gaza Strip on July 8. The operation’s ground phase started on July 17 and was preceded by massive artillery preparations and strikes from air and sea at the territory of the Palestinian enclave. The operation involves large forces of the Israeli army’s infantry, engineering troops and tank units.
According to medical services of the Palestinian enclave, as many as 583 people have been killed and 3,600 have been wounded in the Gaza Strip since July 8. According to UNICEF, over this period, as many as 121 children aged from five months to 17 have been killed in the Gaza Strip - 84 boys and 37 girls. Eighty children were younger than 12. A total of 904 Palestinian children have been wounded.
According to the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, or OCHA, as many as 102,000 people have been driven out of their homes to be accommodated at 69 schools. Almost 500 houses have been completely destroyed or seriously damaged in Israel’s air strikes.
Since Israeli troops entered the Gaza Strip, Israel’s army confirmed the death of 27 servicemen while at least another 123 were wounded.