The Israel-Palestine crisis has reached its fourth week, with UN aid teams highlighting the increasing pressure on north Gaza hospitals where patients and health workers remain. The vicinities of Shifa and Al Quds hospitals in Gaza city and the Indonesian hospital in northern Gaza have been bombarded over the weekend, following renewed calls by the Israeli military to evacuate these facilities immediately. Some 117,000 displaced people are sheltering in the 10 hospitals still operational in Gaza city and elsewhere in northern Gaza, which have received “repeated evacuation orders” in recent days.
UN health agency WHO reiterated that evacuation of hospitals is impossible without endangering patients’ lives. Emergency C-sections are being performed without anesthesia amid shortages of medical supplies and power, and doctors are sometimes left delivering premature babies of dying mothers. UNRWA, the UN agency for Palestine refugees, said that its aid workers in Gaza “keep going”, providing assistance to over 600,000 people who have sought safety in UN Palestine refugee relief organization (UNRWA) shelters, now more than three times over capacity.
As of Sunday evening, the death toll in Gaza since 7 October passed the 8,000 mark, according to the Hamas-run Ministry of Health in Gaza. Palestinian armed groups’ indiscriminate rocket firing towards Israeli cities and towns continued over the past 24 hours, with no fatalities reported. Israeli authorities claim that 239 Israelis and foreign nationals, including some 30 children, remain captive in Gaza and 40 people are still reported missing following Hamas’ terror attacks on Israel on October 7, which killed 1,400 people.
OCHA stressed that a much larger volume of aid is needed on a regular basis to prevent further deterioration in the dire humanitarian situation, including civil unrest.