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‘Lost for Words’ says WHO chief after Israeli strike on Gaza’s Al-Shifa hospital kills 4, raises call for ‘ceasefire’

World Health Organization (WHO) chief, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus was at ‘loss for words’ following an Israeli strike on Gaza hospital that killed four and injured numerous others.

The Director-General of WHO highlighted the dreadful situation at Al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza amid ongoing hostilities between Israeli forces and the Hamas militant group. These hostilities took the shape of a war following Hamas’s attack on Israel six months ago, on October 7, following which Israel declared war.

Also read: Israel-Hamas truce talks to resume today in Cairo, to bring a ‘pause’ to war after 6 months: Report

Gaza’s Al-Shifa hospital came under siege on March 18, since then 21 patients have lost their lives and the situation remains critical, the UN health agency reported.

Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus took to social media and in a post on X (formerly Twitter), he said, “21 patients have died since the hospital came under siege on 18 March. Hostilities continue around the hospital according to updates from Al-Shifa hospital in #Gaza reported by a health worker inside the hospital.”

Also read: Israel-Hamas War: 1.5 million Palestinian civilians forced to evacuate due to Israeli attacks; 10 updates

Commenting on the terrible inhumane conditions, he said 107 patients are in an inadequate building, within the hospital compound, lacking needed health support, medical care and supplies.

He remarked, “Patients have been moved multiple times within the hospital compound since the siege began.”

The WHO chief pointed out that the hospital lacks necessary means of care, these range from unavailability of diapers, urine bags to water. The sieged hospital bears witness dehydrated patients with infected wounds among whom 4 are children while 28 patients are in critical condition.

Also read: Israel-Hamas War: ‘My hope is that by next Monday..,’ says US President Joe Biden on ceasefire

He also noted that there is no water to clean wounds and ‘only one bottle of water remains for every 15 people’ since March 31. Amid spread of contagious diseases due to extremely unsanitary conditions and a lack of water.

The post further reads, “Food is extremely limited – this is potentially life-threatening for diabetic patients whose condition is worsening.”

The WHO Director-General called upon Israel to immediately facilitate access and a humanitarian corridor so that the UN agency and its partners could carry out the lifesaving transfer of patients.

He raised an appeal for ceasefire and wrote, “We repeat: every moment matters. Ceasefire!”

Also read: Hamas will stick to its ‘original position’ on full ceasefire with Israel

Later, in another post on X, the WHO chief tweeted, “Lost for Words.”

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Published: 01 Apr 2024, 08:03 AM IST

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