Israeli snipers shooting and killing hospital workers in Gaza
On Monday Dec. 11, 2023, a Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) surgeon was injured inside Al-Awda hospital in north Gaza by a shot fired from outside the facility.
Our colleagues report snipers surrounding the hospital, firing on those inside. Al-Awda has been under total siege by Israeli forces since December 5.
Renzo Fricke, MSF head of mission, said today: “Reports coming out of Al-Awda hospital are harrowing and we are gravely worried for safety of patients and staff inside. Let us be clear: Al Awda is a functioning hospital with medical staff and many patients in vulnerable condition. Targeting medical workers as they care for their patients is utterly reprehensible, utterly inhumane.”
Al-Awda hospital has been under attack since October 7. These attacks have killed at least five hospital staff, including two MSF doctors while they were caring for their patients.
The hospital building has also sustained substantial damage in the bombing and fighting, along many other hospitals in the north of the Strip, and supplies are running low, further compromising the doctors’ capacity to treat patients.
More on MSF’s response in Gaza, click here.
On December 8, 2023, the United Nations Security Council failed to adopt a resolution demanding a ceasefire in Gaza—blocked by a veto from the United States.
The Security Council held an emergency meeting to discuss the humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza.
This followed a letter from the UN Secretary-General invoking Article 99 to call on the Security Council to prevent further escalation and end this crisis.
In addition to demanding an immediate humanitarian ceasefire, the draft resolution tabled by the United Arab Emirates reiterated the Security Council’s demand on all parties to comply with their obligations under international law, notably with regard to the protection of civilians in Palestine and Israel.
Avril Benoît, executive director of Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) USA gave the following statement:
“As bombs continue to rain down on Palestinian civilians and cause widespread destruction, the US has once again used its power to block an attempt by the UN Security Council to demand a ceasefire in Gaza. By vetoing this resolution, the US stands alone in casting its vote against humanity.
The US veto stands in sharp contrast to the values it professes to uphold. By continuing to provide diplomatic cover for the ongoing atrocities in Gaza, the US is signaling that international humanitarian law can be applied selectively—and that the lives of some people matter less than the lives of others.
Israel has continued to indiscriminately attack civilians and civilian structures, impose a siege that amounts to collective punishment for the entire population of Gaza, force mass displacement, and deny access to vital medical care and humanitarian assistance. The US continues to provide political and financial support to Israel as it prosecutes its military operations regardless of the terrible toll on civilians. For humanitarians to be able to respond to the overwhelming needs, we need a ceasefire now.
The US veto makes it complicit in the carnage in Gaza.”
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