NewsGaza's dire humanitarian situation challenges international aid

Gaza’s dire humanitarian situation challenges international aid

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In a firsthand account from Gaza, humanitarian workers detail the alarming challenges faced in delivering crucial medical assistance to the region. Casey, who recently visited Gaza to explore avenues for increased international medical support, highlighted the difficulties in providing supplies to northern Gaza, with his team unable to reach al-Shifa, the largest hospital in the north, for 12 consecutive days.

At Al-Ahli hospital, the situation was described as grim by Casey, noting patients lying on church pews with the hospital lacking fuel, power, water, and essential medical supplies. Despite accusations from Israel that Hamas pilfers relief supplies, Casey asserted he found no evidence of such actions during his hospital visits.

Dr. Seema Jilani, a pediatrician and senior technical adviser for emergency health at the International Rescue Committee, recently returned from a mission to Gaza with a group of British doctors. Describing the conditions at Al-Aqsa Hospital in central Gaza as the most extreme in her career, Jilani recounted treating children without adequate pediatric supplies, including morphine and chest tubes.

During her mission, Jilani treated a 1-year-old boy with both his right arm and leg blown off, highlighting the scarcity of resources and makeshift conditions in the hospitals. Palestinian doctors and nurses, working tirelessly, faced the dual challenge of hospital duties during the day and searching for food and shelter for their families at night.

In response to the escalating crisis, the U.N. secretary-general appointed a special humanitarian and reconstruction coordinator for Gaza, Sigrid Kaag, who observed logistical operations during her recent visit. Meanwhile, Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, speaking in Davos, emphasized the urgent need for an immediate humanitarian cease-fire in Gaza, followed by a comprehensive process leading to sustained peace based on a two-state solution.

Israel imposed a total blockade on Hamas-controlled Gaza following the group’s attack in southern Israel on October 7, resulting in significant casualties. The Hamas-run Gaza health ministry reports over 24,000 Palestinians killed since October 7, with a majority being women and children. As international leaders call for urgent action, the situation in Gaza remains critical, demanding immediate attention and coordinated efforts to alleviate the humanitarian crisis.

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