Gaza baby saved from dying mother's womb dies

AFP , Friday 26 Apr 2024

A baby saved from her dying mother's womb in the war-battered Gaza Strip has died, her uncle told AFP on Friday.

Gaza baby
In this file photo, Palestinian baby girl, Sabreen Jouda, who was delivered prematurely after her mother was killed in an Israeli strike along with her husband and daughter, lies in an incubator in the Emirati hospital in Rafah, southern Gaza Strip. AP


Sabreen al-Ruh was the only surviving member of her immediate family after she was delivered by Caesarean section while her mother lay fatally wounded from an Israeli air strike at the weekend.

The Emirati hospital in the southern Gaza city of Rafah said the premature baby died on Thursday "despite efforts by the neonatal unit staff" to keep her alive.

Her uncle Rami al-Sheikh told AFP the hospital had called to say "her condition had worsened and they couldn't save her".

"She passed away to join her family," he said. "I went and completed all the procedures at the hospital today, and brought the girl's body home."

"I opened her father Shukri's grave and buried her there," he added.

Witnesses told AFP the family's house in Rafah was hit by an Israeli strike, which killed at least 19 people, according to Gaza's health ministry. Al-Ruh's father and sister were among those killed.

Al-Ruh's mother Sabreen al-Sakani reached the emergency unit at the city's Kuwaiti hospital in a critical condition with wounds to the head and abdomen, and died shortly after the baby was delivered.

Doctors had described the baby's survival as a "miracle" earlier this week.

Al-Ruh had been transferred to the Emirati field hospital, set up in December to cope with the besieged Palestinian territory's mounting toll of injured and dead.

Israel has since threatened to invade Rafah, where most of Gaza's population has sought refuge, despite international outcry.

More than 34,000 Palestinians have been killed during the Israeli war on Gaza, about two-thirds of the dead are women and children. 

More than half of Gaza's 2.3 million people have sought refuge in Rafah, where Israel has conducted near-daily raids as it prepares for a possible offensive in the city.

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