The World Health Organization (WHO) warned this Monday that the hospital situation in Gaza is “catastrophic”, with most hospitals out of operation.
“We now have 1.7 million displaced people, so we have double or triple the population (in southern Gaza), using a third of the hospital beds in less than a third of the available hospitals,” he said. the executive director of the WHO Health Emergencies Programme. , Michael Ryan, in a ‘briefing’ at the UN headquarters in New York, in which he participated by videoconference from Geneva.
“Even if we had a ceasefire tomorrow morning, we would still have a big problem on our hands,” he added.
Ryan said health services in the Gaza Strip can no longer provide care for more complex medical cases, including most cancer patients and kidney dialysis patients, and will likely be overwhelmed with some 5,500 births expected next month.
The Israeli army’s plans to push further south, Ryan said, would further worsen health conditions.
“The hospital situation – the situation of the primary health care system – in Gaza is catastrophic and is the worst that can be imagined in the north,” he said.
Ryan also stated that one of the consequences of the collapse of the health system is that it is “very difficult” to keep the real numbers of victims up to date, noting that the vast majority of those murdered are women and children.
“And there are still a large number of missing people, among whom up to 1,500 children could be found,” he stressed.
In addition to the injured, some of them very serious, the WHO reported a large number of people crowded into shelters, a situation that generates epidemic risks.
The rains and sudden drop in temperatures will also create a problem of potential pneumonia, especially among children, the WHO official warned.
Doctors Without Borders (MSF) said Monday that its clinic in Gaza City was hit by gunfire in “intense fighting” around the facility, which led to the demolition of a wall and part of the building was engulfed in flames.
The organization, which “urgently called for an end to the fighting in the area,” indicated in its account on platform an Israeli tank. seen.
The MSF clinic in the city of #Loop was hit this morning: our companions say that a wall was demolished and that part of the building was engulfed in flames, while intense fighting took place in the surrounding area. An Israeli tank was seen in the street.
– Doctors Without Borders (@MSF_Portugal) November 20, 2023
According to the organization, dozens of people inside the clinic are “in extreme danger”, while “more than 50 people, including MSF staff, are in nearby buildings and there is one injured person who needs medical attention”, in a time when several NGO vehicles “were on fire.”
Meanwhile, United Nations (UN) Undersecretary-General for Political and Peacebuilding Affairs Rosemary DiCarlo met on Sunday with Israeli President Isaac Herzog and other senior government officials, including those at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. Foreigners abroad, and met with families. of hostages held in Gaza.
The information was provided by the UN itself, which indicated that Rosemary DiCarlo held new meetings this Monday with Israeli interlocutors and United Nations colleagues on the ground.
On Tuesday, the deputy secretary general will travel to Ramallah, a city in the central West Bank, to meet with Palestinian interlocutors.
DiCarlo’s meetings with Israeli authorities come at a time of high tensions between the UN and Israel, with Tel Aviv rejecting the United Nations’ critical position regarding its attacks in Gaza.
The Israeli government even called for António Guterres to resign from the UN leadership after the secretary general said the Hamas attacks “did not come out of nowhere.”