UNDP urges immediate ceasefire in Gaza, seeks global support for rebuilding

A senior official of the United Nations Development Programme has appealed for an immediate ceasefire in fighting in the Gaza Strip. He also sought international support for efforts to rebuild the enclave.

Abdallah Al Dardari, director of UNDP's Regional Bureau for Arab States, spoke in an interview with NHK in Tokyo on Thursday.

The official noted that his agency is working to provide people in Gaza with solid waste management services and clean desalinated drinking water.

But he said the situation is severe as Israeli military attacks have killed UN workers and family members or forced them to evacuate repeatedly.

Dardari said "all aspects of life have been badly affected or even shattered." He stressed it is "already very, very late" to implement a ceasefire but that it is still "better than never."

The official also emphasized that there will be many challenges toward reconstruction if a ceasefire takes place. He said they will include preparing thousands of temporary prefabricated homes and disposing of 38 million tons of debris.

Dardari indicated preparations for rebuilding should start even before the fighting is over. He called for the international community, including Japan, to use its expertise in reconstruction efforts.

He asked Japan to share its knowhow on how to quickly deal with debris and its technologies for effective recycling of rubble.