Days of Palestine

Wednesday, February 1

British NGO: Gaza patients die due to Israel’s restrictions

Days of Palestine -

British Medical Aid for Palestinians (MAP) mourned on Wednesday deaths of two Gaza patients, including 5-year-old girl, as Israel prevented them leave besieged enclave.

MAP cited the Al-Mezan Centre for Human Rights, which reported in April the death of five-year-old Aya Khalil abu-Mitalq, who passed away waiting for Israeli authorities to grant her a travel permit to a hospital in occupied East Jerusalem to treat a metabolic disorder.

Israeli occupation authorities failed two times to respond to permit requests submitted by Aya’s family.

Earlier this month, Al-Mezan also reported the death of 59-year-old Walid Mohamed Qaaoud, who passed away on May 2 after cancer metastasised all over his body.

Mohamed died after more than a year of Israeli occupation rejecting his requests for a travel permit to receive life-saving treatment in a hospital in East Jerusalem.

Al-Mezan added that when Qaaoud returned from his last visit to the Augusta Victoria hospital in East Jerusalem in November 2015, Israeli forces at the Erez border detained him for six hours, strip searched him and forced him to stand on one leg facing the wall for a certain period of time.

MAP quoted the World Health Organisation as saying that Israeli authorities had denied or delayed 40 percent of requests to leave Gaza for medical reasons in February, in a stark increase from 2012, when the rejection rate was 8 per cent.

“Israel, as the occupying power of the occupied Palestinian territory, is obliged to ensure that adequate medical care is provided to the people under its effective control,” MAP said in a statement on Wednesday.

“Restrictions on the freedom of movement of Palestinians needing health care and also their carers, are one of a number of barriers to health care imposed by Israeli authorities,” the statement added.