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Canadian nephrologist makes urgent plea for action as Gaza’s healthcare system crumbles amid Israeli bombings

Dr Ben Thomson and humanitarian groups plead with the Canadian government to address Gaza’s healthcare crisis.

‘We are approaching a point of no return where the blatant disregard for international humanitarian law leaves a lasting mark on our collective consciousness.’

Bombings target hospitals, ambulances, and medical personnel, amplifying the risk of atrocity crimes and violating international humanitarian law.

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CANADA: Dr Ben Thomson issued a statement on the conflict in the Gaza Strip involving the Israeli military, stating, ‘We are approaching a point of no return where the blatant disregard for international humanitarian law leaves a lasting mark on our collective consciousness.’

Dr Thomson, a Canadian nephrologist, is collaborating with the Union of Medical Care and Relief Organizations (UOSSM), the Muslim Medical Association of Canada, and Humanity Auxilium to address the urgent healthcare crisis in Gaza.

During a press conference last Saturday (9 Dec), they fervently urged the Canadian government to take action and uphold humanitarian law, particularly in response to the ongoing Israeli bombings in the region.

Providing grim statistics, he reported that as of the morning of the press conference, 283 healthcare workers in Gaza had lost their lives, making the past two months the deadliest conflict in UN history with 133 staff members killed.

Furthermore, there have been 212 attacks on Gaza’s healthcare facilities since 7 October, resulting in the bombing of 24 different hospitals and rendering over 100 ambulances inoperable.

The impact extends beyond casualties and destruction, as Israel has detained numerous doctors, leaving their whereabouts unknown.

Notably, the head of Gaza city’s main hospital, Shifa Hospital, Mohammed Abu Salmiah, has been under Israeli arrest since 22 November.

Dr Ben Thomson expressed deep concern about other senior doctors being held by the Israeli military for almost two weeks without any charges, their locations remaining undisclosed.

Israeli bombings ravage Gaza’s healthcare infrastructure

In recent developments, attention has been drawn to a distressing list of hospitals and medical facilities in Gaza that have become targets of Israeli bombings.

Dr Thomson, in his discourse, provided a sombre account of the alarming situation, presenting a dire inventory of the affected institutions.

Among the casualties of these bombings are the Rantisi Pediatric Subspecialties Hospital, the Al-Nasr Pediatric Hospital, and Gaza’s sole eye hospital.

Even more concerning is the targeting of Gaza’s solitary mental health hospital, Wafa Rehabilitation Hospital, and an adjacent seniors’ facility, both of which have suffered significant damage.

Notably, the Al Jura Children’s Hospital was specifically targeted with prohibited white phosphorus on 12 October.

The Indonesian Hospital, currently the only operational medical facility in the north, is valiantly attempting to treat patients amidst ongoing bombardments.

Tragically, Shifa Hospital, a prominent healthcare institution, has also fallen victim to these bombings, exacerbating the already critical healthcare situation in the region.

Beyond hospitals, the impact extends to educational institutions, with both the Islamic University of Gaza and Al Azhar University’s medical school becoming targets.

The dire situation further unfolds as humanitarian aid convoys, such as those operated by Medicen Sans Frontieres and the Red Cross, have been subjected to bombings, impeding crucial medical assistance and intensifying challenges faced by the beleaguered healthcare system in Gaza.

Humanitarian catastrophe unfolds in Gaza as hospitals face collapse, ambulance operations cease, and disease outbreaks escalate amid ongoing conflict

In Gaza, a dire humanitarian crisis has unfolded as 26 out of the 35 hospitals in the region are currently non-functional, and the remaining nine are only partially operational.

Operating well beyond their capacity, these facilities face critical shortages of basic supplies and fuel, exacerbating the challenges of providing adequate medical care.

Compounding the crisis is the fact that these healthcare facilities are not only struggling to operate but are also serving as makeshift shelters for thousands of internally displaced people.

The Palestine Red Crescent Society announced yesterday that their ambulance operations in northern Gaza have come to a halt due to the depletion of fuel and the closure of hospitals, making it impossible to evacuate the wounded in the northern region, leaving them without vital medical assistance.

Dr Thomson, addressing the alarming situation, revealed that as of the latest update, over 17,000 Palestinian lives have been lost, including more than 7,000 children.

Furthermore, at least 46,000 people have sustained injuries, with thousands critically injured.

However, the severe shortage of hospital space hampers the ability to provide adequate treatment for even a fraction of these patients.

The overcrowded UN shelters, intended as safe havens, have now become breeding grounds for infectious diseases, including outbreaks of hepatitis A, multiple instances of meningitis, lice infestations, skin infections, and numerous cases of diarrheal illnesses.

On December 5th, the UN human rights office issued a declaration expressing grave concern about the pattern of attacks targeting civilian infrastructure, raising questions about Israel’s adherence to international humanitarian law and heightening the risk of atrocity crimes.

The disturbing trend has resulted in immeasurable numbers of violations, particularly in the realm of special protection afforded to civilians, children, and medical personnel.

The indiscriminate targeting of civilian infrastructure not only poses a direct threat to the lives of non-combatants but also raises significant doubts about Israel’s commitment to upholding international humanitarian law.

UN Secretary-General, Guterres, urges humanitarian action amid UN Security Council paralysis

The UN Secretary-General, António Guterres, expressed determination to pursue a ceasefire in Gaza despite the US veto at the Security Council, hindering a clear resolution to the conflict.

At the Doha Forum in Qatar, Guterres, without directly criticizing the US, highlighted the Security Council’s paralysis due to geostrategic divisions and emphasized the outdated nature of world institutions.

Guterres justified invoking Article 99 of the UN Charter to address the Gaza crisis, emphasizing the urgent need for a humanitarian ceasefire.

Despite the Security Council’s failure to act, he asserted his commitment, stating, “I will not give up.”

The existing UN resolution for increased humanitarian aid remains unimplemented, eroding the credibility of the UN.

In the short term, UN officials are focusing on ensuring Israel fulfils commitments for more aid to Gaza.

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Hamas has to surrender. UN Gutere has to step down.

Hamas started the war.

Hamas has to surrender instead of continuing with Hezbollahs to fire missiles.

No point asking the world and telling the world to stop war.

No point crying victimized. Is Hamas still holding hostages?

The world has to come together as one to stop this war.

“blatant disregard for international humanitarian law”

oh you meant like Hamas and useful idiots helping Hamas to hide in hospitals all these while. for years now? you fuckers all suddenly got amnesia or wot?

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