WHO calls for humanitarian pause to gain access to Gaza
World Health Organization officials on Thursday called for a humanitarian pause in Israel’s bombing of Gaza to allow access to aid as the Palestinian enclave’s health system faces critical shortages .
“The closure of entry and exit points for patients and humanitarian health teams and severe restrictions on the entry of medical supplies are exacerbating this public health crisis,” said WHO regional director Ahmed Al-Mandhari, during a press briefing.
“The severity of the injuries is straining an already overwhelmed health system that faces critical shortages of essential drugs and supplies while battling the COVID-19 pandemic.”
A United Nations convoy to bring humanitarian aid, including 10,000 Sinopharm coronavirus vaccines, to Gaza and to get the injured out was ready to enter as soon as it could be accessed, the WHO chief said for the West Bank and Gaza, Rik Peeperkorn.
“Until there is a ceasefire agreement, all parties to the conflict must agree to a humanitarian pause to ensure access to and exit from Gaza,” Peeperkorn said.
Since the fighting began on May 10, health officials in Gaza say 230 Palestinians, including 65 children and 39 women, have been killed and more than 1,700 injured in aerial and artillery shelling. Read more
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