International Council of Nurses Board New Statement on Israel-Gaza Conflict

8 November 2023

The International Council of Nurses (ICN) Board of Directors, meeting in Geneva, expressed its deepest concern for those suffering in the ongoing conflict in Israel and Gaza. The ICN Board condemned all acts of violence and terrorism and renewed its demand for safe access to health services for all and the protection of health care workers.

Statement by the International Council of Nurses Board of Directors

  • We call on all parties in the conflict to establish a peace process, stop the violence and secure peace.
  • We condemn in the strongest possible terms the continuing violence and terrorism in the Israel-Gaza conflict and express our deepest concern for all people in the region and the continued loss of innocent life.
  • We call for all parties to respect their legal obligations under international humanitarian law to protect and respect safe access to health care services and facilities and ensure the safety and protection of civilians and health care workers.
  • We appeal to all parties to urgently, and of paramount importance, find a way to provide safe access to medical and humanitarian aid and support for all people caught up in the conflict.
  • We are deeply concerned for the innocent civilians, particularly women and children, the elderly and the most vulnerable, who are caught up in the conflict and whose physical and mental health are being damaged. We are conscious not only of the health care needs of those who are directly affected by the conflict, but also the pre-existing and on-going needs of people with long-term conditions.
  • We acknowledge the service and enormous sacrifice of all health care workers in the conflict providing care and support to all people whilst their personal safety is at risk at a time when they are dealing with their own loss, including caring for injured family members and mourning those lost.
  • We recognize that nurses and all health workers in the region are personally affected by the violence, destruction and the loss and separation of loved ones, and the huge mental health burden they are living under which must be urgently addressed.
  • We particularly express our heartfelt concern for the members of our national nursing associations in the region and all nurses working on the frontlines of care. • We, as the global voice of nursing, stand in solidarity with all nurses and other health care workers affected by the conflict.

ICN encourages anyone wishing to support nurses and health care in the region to join its #NURSESFORPEACE campaign which supports nurses working on the frontlines of conflict areas around the world and to donate via the ICN Humanitarian Fund