• Tue. Jun 11th, 2024

Bi-Monthly News Brief: Attacks on Health Care in Occupied Palestinian Territory, 18-25 May 2024

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Jun 11, 2024

The Safeguarding Health in Conflict Coalition has reported a staggering 25% increase in incidents of violence against or obstruction of health care in conflict zones in 2023. This represents a total of 2562 documented attacks, which is 500 more attacks than were reported in the previous year. These attacks included bombings, looting, occupations, raids, and vandalism of health facilities.

During the year, there was a significant impact on staffing levels, as health workers were killed, kidnapped, or arrested. Medical supplies and convoys were frequently looted and hijacked, while patients faced obstacles in accessing necessary health care services. Health facilities were increasingly being repurposed for military use, and the areas around these facilities were becoming targets of bombings.

State forces were responsible for nearly half of the reported incidents, and the use of explosive weapons on health care facilities increased in multiple conflict zones around the world. Drones armed with explosives were also increasingly used in attacks on health care in various regions.

Monitoring trends over the years have shown that conflicts where violence against health care is prevalent often start with extreme levels of violence against the health system. This was evident in regions like Manipur state in India, the Gaza Strip, and Sudan in 2023, similar to patterns observed in recent years in countries like Myanmar and Ukraine.

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