U.S. and U.K. doctors in Washington to warn of IDF’s ‘appalling atrocities’ in Gaza

U.S. and U.K. doctors in Washington to warn of IDF’s ‘appalling atrocities’ in Gaza

The Guardian reports:

A delegation of American and British doctors is in Washington DC to tell the Biden administration the Israeli military is systematically destroying Gaza’s health infrastructure in order to drive Palestinians out of their homes.

The doctors, who have recently returned from volunteering at Gaza’s besieged hospitals, are expected to meet White House officials and senior members of Congress this week to warn that pledges of increased aid to Palestinians under bombardment are largely meaningless without an immediate ceasefire to allow safe distribution of food and the revival of healthcare services.

Professor Nick Maynard, the former director for cancer services at Oxford University who worked at the al-Aqsa hospital in central Gaza at the beginning of the year, accused the Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) of “appalling atrocities”.

“The IDF are systematically targeting healthcare facilities, healthcare personnel and really dismantling the whole healthcare system,” he said.

“It’s not just about targeting the buildings, it’s about systematically destroying the infrastructure of the hospitals. Destroying the oxygen tanks at the al-Shifa hospital, deliberately destroying the CT scanners and making it much more difficult to rebuild that infrastructure. If it was just targeting Hamas militants, why are they deliberately destroying the infrastructure of these institutions?”

The UN says none of Gaza’s 36 hospitals is fully functional. A dozen are partially working and the others are destroyed. On Monday, the Israeli military again raided the al-Shifa hospital in Gaza City. Medical staff said the IDF killed and arrested Palestinians inside the hospital.

The crisis in the hospitals has been compounded by the killing or arrest of hundreds of healthcare workers by the Israeli military. Last week the BBC reported that medical staff said they were stripped, beaten and tortured by Israeli troops during a raid on the Nasser hospital in the south of the Gaza Strip, where half the population is now displaced.

Maynard said he believed the closure and damage to the hospitals was part of a strategy to force Palestinians out of their homes. [Continue reading…]

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