‘Impossible Choices’ – WHO Warns Lack of Fuel ‘Catastrophic’ for Gaza Hospitals 

Israel continues to target hospitals in the Gaza Strip. (Photo: via WAFA)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the WHO Chief, again issued an urgent appeal for the Rafah crossing to be reopened and for a sustained flow of fuel, food, water and medical supplies to be permitted into and across Gaza.

The World Health Organization (WHO) chief has warned of further disruption to health services in the besieged Gaza Strip due to a severe lack of fuel.

“Only 90,000L of fuel entered Gaza” on Wednesday whereas the health sector alone “needs 80,000 liters daily,” the WHO Director-General, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said on X on Thursday.

This is forcing the UN – including the WHO – and partners “to make impossible choices,” he stressed.

Ghebreyesus said that at present, humanitarian partners are directing limited fuel supplies to key hospitals, including Nasser Medical Complex, Al-Amal Hospital, and Kuwaiti Field Hospital, as well as to 21 Palestinian Red Crescent Society ambulances to prevent services from “grinding to a halt.”

“With European Gaza Hospital out of service since 2 July, losing more hospitals in the Strip would be catastrophic,” the WHO chief said.

Rafah Closure

He emphasized that hostilities in Rafah “have completely obstructed access” to the main fuel storage facility.

Limited deliveries of fuel into Gaza via the Karem Shalom crossing, “combined with insecurity and challenging routes,” he added, have “further eroded our ability to maintain fuel supplies for health and humanitarian operations.”

Ghebreyesus reiterated “an urgent appeal” for the Rafah crossing to be reopened and for a sustained flow of fuel, food, water and medical supplies to be permitted into and across Gaza.

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The Rafah crossing was shut after the Israeli army launched a ground invasion into the south of the enclave, forcing about one million already displaced Palestinians to flee.

Staggering Death Toll

Currently on trial before the International Court of Justice for genocide against Palestinians, Israel has been waging a devastating war on Gaza since October 7.

According to Gaza’s Ministry of Health, 38,000 Palestinians have been killed, and 87,445 wounded. Moreover, at least 11,000 people are unaccounted for, presumed dead under the rubble of their homes throughout the Strip.

Israel says that 1,200 soldiers and civilians were killed during the Al-Aqsa Flood Operation on October 7. Israeli media published reports suggesting that many Israelis were killed on that day by ‘friendly fire’.

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Palestinian and international organizations say that the majority of those killed and wounded are women and children.

The Israeli war has resulted in an acute famine, mostly in northern Gaza, resulting in the death of many Palestinians, mostly children.

The Israeli aggression has also resulted in the forceful displacement of nearly two million people from all over the Gaza Strip, with the vast majority of the displaced forced into the densely crowded southern city of Rafah near the border with Egypt – in what has become Palestine’s largest mass exodus since the 1948 Nakba.

Later in the war, hundreds of thousands of Palestinians began moving from the south to central Gaza in a constant search for safety.

(The Palestine Chronicle)

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