The UN human rights chief on Thursday said he is "very disturbed" by the Israeli government’s suggestion of mass displacement of Palestinians from Gaza.

Iran PressAmerica: "Very disturbed by high-level Israeli officials' statements on plans to transfer civilians from #Gaza to third countries," Volker Turk said in a post shared by the human rights office on X.

Stressing that 85% of the Gaza population is already internally displaced, Turk said: "They have the right to return to their homes," the Anadolu News Agency reported.

"Int'l law prohibits forcible transfer of protected persons within or deportation from occupied territory," he warned.

Israel's National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir and Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich have expressed support for the voluntary migration of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, urging countries to take them in.

The remarks of Gvir and Smotrich have been condemned internationally, including by the US, UK, Germany, and France.

Israel launched air and ground attacks on the Gaza Strip since a cross-border attack by Palestinian resistance group Hamas on Oct. 7.

At least 22,313 Palestinians have since been killed and 57,296 others injured, according to Gaza’s health authorities, while nearly 1,200 Israelis are believed to have been killed in the Hamas incursion.

The onslaught has left Gaza in ruins, with 60% of the enclave’s infrastructure damaged or destroyed, and nearly 2 million residents displaced amid acute shortages of food, clean water, and medicine.


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