The Palestinian Ministry of Health reported that only eight hospitals are “partially” operating in the south of the Gaza Strip, a region that has been the focus of Israeli attacks after the end of the first humanitarian truce between the Tel Aviv army and Hamas.

Of the 2.3 million residents of the Palestinian territory, 80% have been displaced to the south, with tens of thousands of people crammed into United Nations (UN) schools or sheltered in makeshift tents.

Last week, the head of the World Health Organization (WHO) had gone so far as to classify the “decimation” of Gaza’s health system as a “tragedy”, as humanitarian teams see an extreme increase in the need for medical aid but Israel’s attacks continue to claim hundreds of victims every day.

The agency estimates that around 50,000 pregnant women live in Gaza and 180 births occur day after day amid the Israeli army’s incessant attacks directly on the Palestinian health system.

In a statement issued on Sunday (24/12), the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian Refugees (UNHCR) stated that its medical teams “are doing everything possible to provide care to pregnant women in the seven operational health centers ” from the agency – down from 22 before the escalation of Israeli hostilities in Gaza began.

On the same day, the head of the WHO himself lamented the “decimation” of Gaza’s health system and paid tribute to the health professionals who continue to work even in extreme circumstances.

“The decimation of Gaza’s health system is a tragedy,” said Tedros Adhanom, on platform X, while reiterating his call for an effective ceasefire. “In the face of constant insecurity and an influx of injured patients, we see doctors, nurses, ambulance drivers and others continuing their efforts to save lives.”

The hospitals, protected by international humanitarian law, have been repeatedly hit by Israeli strikes since October 7. As of December 20, the WHO recorded 246 bombings of health infrastructure in Gaza, including hospitals and ambulances.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *