Israeli airstrikes hit at least three hospitals in the Gaza Strip this Friday (10), according to reports from the local Ministry of Health and the Palestinian Red Crescent Society (PRCS). As the departure of Brazilians and other foreigners is conditional on the transfer of the injured from the Gaza Strip to Egypt, clashes around hospitals could hamper the logistics for ambulances to leave.
Among the hospitals attacked this Friday is the largest in the Gaza Strip, Al-Shiva, which is located in the city of Gaza. “Israeli occupation forces have attacked the Al-Shifa Medical Complex five times in a row and are still targeting the vicinity of the hospital,” the Palestinian organization said.
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In a social networkUN Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, Martin Griffiths, commented on the “horrible reports” that are coming in about the attack on Al-Shiva and highlighted that the lives of thousands of patients, staff and displaced civilians are at risk.
“Under international humanitarian law, hospitals must be protected. As I have said before, acts of war in protected places must stop. In fact, they must never happen,” he said.
According to international humanitarian law, attacking health facilities constitutes a war crime.
Also this Friday, PRCS reported in a social network that “Israeli occupation forces opened fire on the intensive care unit at Al-Quds hospital.” Al-Quds hospital in Gaza city is under the care of this organization.
“One martyr and 28 injured among those displaced in Al-Quds Hospital, most of them children, with two of them in critical condition due to occupation snipers targeting the hospital. Additionally, there are injuries caused by artillery shrapnel at west of the hospital”, PRCS published today.
Israel has argued that the Hamas group builds tunnels under health facilities, putting civilians at risk. All of these hospitals are in the northern part of the Palestinian enclave, where Israel reports that it has concentrated its battles against Hamas. The Israeli Embassy in Brazil was approached to comment on the information, but did not respond to questions.
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In addition to Al-Shiva hospital, there are reports of clashes around Al-Rantisi and Al-Nasr children’s hospitals, both in the center of Gaza city, which reportedly led to fires at Al-Rantisi and the suspension of services provided by the units. . “Israeli occupation forces besiege the Al-Rantisi and Al-Nasr children’s hospitals, exposing the lives of thousands of patients, medical personnel and displaced people,” says a statement from the Gaza Ministry of Health.
Furthermore, the UN Office of Humanitarian Affairs (Ocha) reported that Gaza’s only psychiatric hospital has stopped functioning “after suffering damage due to an attack on November 5.”
Brazilians in Gaza
The 34 Brazilians or family members were allowed to leave the Gaza Strip, but were unable to cross the Rafah border with Egypt because there is an understanding among the actors responsible for evacuating foreigners that people of other nationalities can only leave the zone of war after the injuries, according to Brazilian Foreign Minister Mauro Viera this Friday.
Today passed at least 12 children with cancer or other diseases for Egypt and Jordan, according to the World Health Organization (WHO).
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However, there are still dozens of injured people trapped in northern Gaza, according to the Brazilian Representation Office in Ramallah, in the occupied West Bank. The Brazilian ambassador at the scene, Alessandro Candeas, said that the strong Israeli military presence and the fighting around hospitals prevent or make it difficult for ambulances to leave.
“If ambulances can leave tomorrow, foreigners will also leave, including our Brazilians. We are all mobilized. As soon as the news comes out about the opening of the border, we will take everyone back there in a few minutes”, he informed.
In a statement, the Israeli Embassy in Brazil said that, “despite the many efforts of Israel and Brazil, Hamas today prevented the opening of the Rafah crossing and prevented Brazilian citizens from leaving the Gaza Strip.”