Conflicts & War

WHO director insists attacks on Shifa hospital are “totally unacceptable

Geneva, Switzerland, Nov 15 (EFE). – The director general of the World Health Organization (WHO), Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said Wednesday about Israel’s military incursion into Al-Shifa hospital.

“Reports of military incursion into Al-Shifa hospital are deeply concerning. We’ve lost touch again with health personnel at the hospital. We’re extremely worried for their and their patients’ safety,” he had also stated earlier on X.

The operation at the hospital in the Gaza Strip’s capital comes amid claims by the Israeli army that Hamas troops are sheltering inside the facilities as well as in underground tunnels beneath.

However, the OMS director pointed out that “even if health facilities are used for military purposes, the principles of distinction, precaution and proportionality always apply”.

The Ethiopian expert assured that WHO has lost contact with the staff of Shifa, the main hospital in Gaza.

He also regretted that they have not received updated information on deaths and injuries in the Strip for the past three days, which hinders the organization’s ability to assess the functioning of the health system.

During his weekly press briefing, the WHO chief lamented that only a quarter of Gaza’s hospitals are functioning, and 26 out of 36 have closed due to damage from the attacks or because they have run out of fuel.

Tedros also condemned the fact that before the conflict there were about 3,500 hospital beds in Gaza, but now it is estimated that there are only about 1,400.

He explained that the lack of beds, combined with the increasing number of patients, is forcing doctors and nurses to make impossible choices in order to provide care.

The WHO director-general also referred to the lack of fuel in the Strip, stating that “at least 120,000 liters per day are needed” to operate hospital generators, ambulances, desalination plants, sewage treatment plants and telecommunications.

He noted that a truck carrying 23,000 liters of fuel entered Gaza early Wednesday, but its use was restricted by Israel to “only transporting aid from Rafah.”

“We may be able to get aid into Gaza through the Rafah crossing, but without fuel we can’t get it to where it needs to go,” he stressed.EFE


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