A Palestinian shoemaker from Hebron (Al-Khalil) has responded to the coronavirus crisis by transforming his factory into the only manufacturer of face masks in the occupied West Bank, reported +972 Magazine.
Amjad Zaghir made the shift “overnight”, and now oversees the production of “thousands of masks a day”, making him “a national hero for helping Palestinians protect themselves from the virus”.
— Palestine Chronicle (@PalestineChron) March 24, 2020
According to +972 Magazine, “Zaghir got to work as soon as news broke of the first diagnosed cases of COVID-19 in Bethlehem”, buying a mask to study how it is made – and if he could recreate it.
“I approached my friend, a pharmacist, and asked him what materials are used to make masks,” said Zaghir. “He explained that what we use in shoemaking is unsuitable, and pointed me in the right direction”.
Finding the right fabric from a local vendor, Zaghir began experimenting with the methods of making the masks.
— Palestine Chronicle (@PalestineChron) March 25, 2020
The 30-year-old business-owner told +972 Magazine that profit wasn’t the only reason that motivated him.
“This is about helping my people, and a way of providing work opportunities…,” Zaghir said.
On the first day, the factory managed to create 500 masks, and the following day 1,000 more. Having boosted staff numbers, the factory now makes 7-9,000 masks daily.
(Middle East Monitor, PC, Social Media)