Israel has already attacked hospitals and health care facilities in Gaza 51 times, says “horrified” United Nations
The United Nations (UN) has issued a statement of condemnation against the brutality of Israel against Gaza, which includes 51 different bombings of hospitals and health care facilities in the Palestinian territory.
As both sides blame each other for the terror campaign that is leading to regional and possibly global war, UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres wrote on X that he is “horrified” at what is taking place.
Guterres stressed in his social media message that bombing hospitals and medical personnel is prohibited under international law, and those who do it are committing war crimes.
He also condemned a strike and attack that occurred on a school run by UNRWA, the UN agency that assists Palestinian refugees. That Israeli strike killed at least six people, according to a spokesperson.
“We don’t yet know the full scale of this carnage, but what is clear is that the violence and killings must stop at once,” said High Commissioner Volker Türk in a statement.
“WHO (World Health Organization) strongly condemns the attack,” added agency chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus. “We call for the immediate protection of civilians and healthcare, and for the evacuation orders to be reversed.”
(Related: Who really blew up the al-Ahli Arab Hospital in Gaza?)
Where will all those millions of Palestinians living in Gaza go once Israel forces them out? Probably to a neighborhood near you
Those evacuation orders, which allowed just 24 hours for more than one million Palestinians to leave northern Gaza, are simply “impossible to carry out,” the UN stressed.
The WHO said that the sheer number of patients, many of whom are critically ill, coupled with a lack of ambulances, staff workers and health system bed capacity – not to mention alternative shelter for those displaced – makes Israel’s demands an impossibility.
Even so, Israel is moving forward full-steam ahead with plans for a full ground invasion of Gaza, which is currently home to around 2.3 million people who have nowhere to go if Israel forces them to exit the territory or else stay and get killed.
“Evacuation orders must be reversed,” the WHO said. “International humanitarian law must be abided by, which means health care must be actively protected and never targeted.”
According to the UN, there have been more than 115 attacks on healthcare facilities across the Occupied Palestinian Territory since the latest conflict first began on October 7. At least 15 healthcare workers have been killed, and another 27 injured, according to Hyo-Jeong Kim, head of the WHO’s Attacks on Health Care Initiative.
Some 600,000 Palestinians have already been displaced from northern Gaza, and many of them are seeking shelter in hospitals located in the central and southern portions of the territory, which is where Israel told them to go.
If Israel is bombing said hospitals, though, then these people stand no chance of surviving their long trek down through the territory and out into … somewhere, since Egypt does not want them, either.
“They go to these hospitals because they expect they are safe places,” stated Dr. Richard Peeperkorn, the WHO’s Representative in the Occupied Palestinian Territory. “Now, even a hospital is not a safe place anymore – what is?”
Meanwhile, Gaza is rapidly running out of food, water, critical medicines and other health supplies after Israel cut off all resources while proceeding to conduct airstrikes on targets throughout the territory.
“Besides the whole essential medicines, we also have to think about simple things – cleaning materials, hygiene materials – to avoid infections,” Dr. Peeperkorn further stated.
“Already now in the hospitals, in the key hospitals, they see a lot of infections, infected patients, because of that.”
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Sources for this article include: