A World Health Organisation delegation arrived in the Gaza Strip on Sunday to assess the situation after the Gazan health ministry announced that two people have tested positive for coronavirus, the Palestinian news agency Shehab reported.
Headed by the director of the WHO office in Palestine, Gerald Rockenschaub, the delegation entered Gaza through the Erez Crossing.
— Palestine Chronicle (@PalestineChron) March 21, 2020
This visit comes hours after the Palestinian Ministry of Health announced it discovered the first two COVID-19 case in the Gaza Strip in the early hours of Sunday.
The news added to fear of a potential outbreak in the besieged and impoverishes Gaza Strip. Gaza’s healthcare system is in shambles and its war-battered residents are especially vulnerable as they have lived under an Israeli-Egyptian siege for nearly 13 years.
Authorities in Gaza have decided to shut down the enclave’s restaurants, cafes and reception halls. Friday prayers at mosques have also been suspended until further notice.
— Palestine Chronicle (@PalestineChron) March 22, 2020
“The truth is, no amount of ‘preparedness’ in Gaza – or, frankly, anywhere in occupied Palestine – can stop the spread of the Coronavirus,” wrote Palestinian journalist and editor of The Palestine Chronicle, Ramzy Baroud.
“What is needed is a fundamental and structural change that would emancipate the Palestinian healthcare system from the horrific impact of the Israeli occupation and the Israeli government’s policies of perpetual siege and politically-imposed ‘quarantines’ – also known as apartheid,” Baroud added.
(Palestine Chronicle, MEMO, Social Media)