The barbaric attack on a civilian population in Gaza has obliterated entire families while destroying medical facilities, infrastructure, homes, and entire apartment blocks, reducing them to rubble. According to the World Health Organization significant damage to multiple health facilities in the Gaza Strip including the destruction of the Hala Al Shawa primary care clinic and substantial damage to the central testing laboratory for COVID-19 al Rimal clinic in Gaza City.
To date, 24 health facilities have suffered partial or complete damage. The blockade and closure of entry and exit points in Gaza for patients, humanitarian health teams, and the entry of medical supplies, has exacerbated an already catastrophic health crisis.
In the West Bank, militant settlers aided by the military and police have prevented medical teams from accessing casualties. Many have been beaten and injured in addition to damaging, detention, and confiscation of ambulances, and attacks on health facilities and businesses.
The industrial zone in Gaza built with USAID funds has been destroyed with factories and companies bombed further ensuring loss of jobs and economic restructuring after Covid, adding to the humanitarian catastrophe.
As of this update, 230 Gazans have lost their lives, including 65 children. This number is sure to rise as many have been critically injured. More than 50,000 people have lost their homes or have been forced to leave and are now sheltered in UNWRA schools. The only Covid-19 laboratory was destroyed, and vaccines are currently unavailable, worsening the ongoing threat of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Now, more than half of the population requires humanitarian assistance.
KinderUSA is preparing to distribute food baskets and market vouchers to families in Gaza allowing them to shop at local stores to buy essential items and to have all basic food items delivered to them. Many families are in remote locations and cannot travel, so our team will bring food directly to them. Our goal is to help families, local merchants and farmers recover some of the economic loss all Gazans are facing again.
A cease-fire has been negotiated. International humanitarian aid must be allowed entry along with medical evacuations. Military occupation, political deadlock, and hopelessness cannot continue and although the missiles have stopped, the appalling loss of civilian life without accountability predicts another war.
It is time for our government along with the international community to speak with one voice and protect the rights of the Palestinian people.