WHO urges Israel to reconsider evacuation order for Gaza medical supplies

Ahram Online , Tuesday 5 Dec 2023

In response to an Israeli notification instructing the World Health Organization (WHO) to evacuate medical supplies from its warehouse in southern Gaza within 24 hours, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom has urged Israel to reconsider its directive.

File Photo: WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom. AFP


The WHO received on Monday a notification from the Israel Defense Forces instructing the removal of medical supplies from its warehouse in southern Gaza within a stringent 24-hour timeframe, Adhanom said on on X, formerly Twitter,

The Israeli order, attributed to upcoming ground operations, has prompted a plea from WHO Director-General.

The WHO is urging Israel to rescind the eviction order and to employ all available means to safeguard civilians, emphasizing the importance of protecting vital infrastructure, including hospitals and humanitarian facilities, he said.

The appeal underscores the essential role of the medical supplies in supporting health services, especially during times of heightened tensions and potential crises.

On Monday, witnesses informed AFP that Israel has deployed ground forces into southern Gaza, a move raising global concerns regarding increasing civilian casualties and the potential escalation of the conflict across the Middle East.

Witnesses reported the entry of numerous Israeli tanks, armored personnel carriers, and bulldozers into the southern region near the city of Khan Yunis, where a significant population of internally displaced Palestinians resides.

More than 15,500 people have been killed in the besieged Palestinian territory, according to the Palestinian Health Ministry in Gaza, in more than eight weeks of combat and heavy bombardment.

Meanwhile, following her arrivial in war-torn Gaza on Monday, the president of the International Committee of the Red Cross warned that the suffering in the Palestinian territory was "intolerable."

"I repeat our urgent call for civilians to be protected in line with the laws of war and for aid to enter unimpeded," Mirjana Spoljaric said on X, adding that "the captives must be released and ICRC allowed to safely visit them."

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