Doctors Without Borders urges Israel to stop bombing civilians

New York, July 21 (Petra) – Doctors Without Borders (MSF), the international medical humanitarian organization, urged Israel to stop bombing civilians trapped in the Gaza Strip and allow medical personnel to enter and operate safely.

"The majority of the dead and wounded in Gaza are civilians and medical workers are also coming under fire," the French NGO said in a statement issued on Monday, noting that women and children comprised most of the wounded people arriving in Al Shifa Hospital in Gaza, where MSF is working.

MSF field coordinator in Gaza, Nicolas Palarus, said that shelling and air strikes are not only intense but are also unpredictable, which makes it very difficult for MSF and other medical workers to move and provide much needed emergency care.

"Medical workers and facilities must be respected, and shooting should not occur at or near ambulances and hospitals," he added, pointing that while Israeli official claims that the objective of the ground offensive is to destroy tunnels into Israel, what is seen on the ground is indiscriminate bombing.

In response to the emergency, MSF is supporting Al Shifa Hospital in Gaza with a full surgical team, medical equipment and emergency supplies, and has donated two emergency stocks to the Central Drug Store in the south and north of Gaza.

The MSF post-operative clinic in Gaza City is running at 10 to 30 percent of its capacity because the intensity of the bombing impedes patients from accessing the facility. Regular MSF activities in Nasser Hospital in Khan Yunis have been interrupted by the conflict.

MSF has been working in Gaza for more than 10 years, providing medical, surgical and psychological services. It also responded to the 2009 and 2012 emergencies in the Strip.

//Petra// RZ//R Q//


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