Doctors Without Borders calls for immediate ceasefire in Gaza
In a desperate plea for international intervention, the MSF (Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières) has called for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza. The humanitarian organization, represented by Avril Benoit, has released a harrowing account of the conditions faced by Palestinian medics and civilians amidst ongoing conflict. Despite the threat of death and severe shortages of essential resources, local physicians continue to provide care, often in perilous and under-equipped environments.
The situation has reached a critical point, with more than 10,800 Palestinians, predominantly women and children, reported dead, according to Gaza's Ministry of Health. MSF highlights the need for a ceasefire to replace the inadequate "humanitarian pauses" proposed by the US, which have failed to alleviate the suffering or reduce civilian casualties. Current conditions in Gaza, as described by MSF, include hospitals and ambulances being targeted, overwhelmed medical facilities, and a population facing collective punishment through deprivation of necessities.
MSF's call comes in the wake of USA President Joe Biden's remarks indicating the unlikelihood of a ceasefire and the White House's advocacy of temporary halts in hostilities. However, such measures have proven insufficient, with MSF arguing that only a complete cessation of violence will meet the massive humanitarian needs and prevent further loss of life.
The organization's appeal is underscored by personal accounts from medics on the ground and the tragic loss of one of their colleagues, Mohammed Al Ahel, a lab technician with MSF, who was killed along with family members during an airstrike. Reports of strikes on critical infrastructure, including Al-Shifa Hospital, the largest medical facility in the region, exacerbate the dire situation.
MSF's continued efforts to deliver medical aid and supplies, in coordination with the Egyptian Red Crescent and Palestine Red Crescent Society, are challenged as the conflict intensifies. The organization stresses that protecting civilians and humanitarians, as international law mandates, is not being upheld.