Palestine Red Crescent Society

Israeli forces kill medical volunteers and block access to hospitals in Gaza

The Israeli occupying forces have deliberately attacked and targeted unarmed civilians as well as PRCS ambulances and medical teams. On November 3, 2006, Israeli forces targeted and killed two members of PRCS medical teams, while they were attempting to evacuate a victim killed by Israeli fire in Beit Lahia area. At the same time, Beit Hanoun Hospital is continued to be under siege by Israeli tanks and armored vehicles, which prevent medical teams and victims from reaching the hospital. 

PRCS condemns attacks on health organizations and PRCS staff

PRCS condemns the Israeli targeting of the health organizations and medical staff as well as the series of Israelis attacks at medical staff and particularly at PRCS staff. PRCS confirmed that Israeli Army attacked the medical center in Al-Maghazi camp in Gaza and wounded a PRCS Emergency Medical Technician (EMT), Mr. Anwar Juma Abu Huli. In addition, a PRCS ambulance was shot in Bet Lehya receiving two bullets causing damage to the vehicle. PRCS EMT Anwar Juma Abu Huli, 40 years old, was wounded today by the Israeli Army while he was on duty. 

Palestine Red Crescent Society prepares for Gaza disengagement

Israeli measures such as closures of Palestinian transportation routes near Gaza settlements and the planned relocation routes, dividing the Gaza Strip into four parts have the potentioal to directly and indirectly affect the Palestinian population through restriction of access to health care. Accessibility to sources of nutrition and safe drinking water may also be disrupted. Additionally, these closures may prevent the PRCS staff and volunteers from accessing the effected areas, the maintenance of an open supply line between headquarters store house and Emergency Medical Services (EMS) stations and PRCS sub-stores, in addition to the deployment of logistics and supplies to effected areas. 

Israeli army hides M16 in Palestinian ambulance

A PRCS ambulance was stopped at Howwara checkpoint on route to Nablus. One of the soldiers opened the rear door of the vehicle aand ordered the team to step out. The soldiers asked if the car contained any weapons and the ambulance crew responded “no”. The soldiers then started searching the ambulance. The soldiers ordered the team to lift the seat opposite the patient’s bed, the team obeyed and were surprised to find an Israeli army M16 weapon in the seat. The soldiers immediately stepped back and pointed their weapons at the medical team. The soldiers questioned the crew about the source of the weapon. The soldiers then laughed and mocked the team as the soldiers removed the weapon. 

Health in Palestine: Access is the key

The Red Crescent deploys mobile teams to provide primary health care to 25,000 vulnerable people affected by movement restrictions in the southern West Bank. Suheila Al-Hureibat, also known as Um Mohammad, is a 38-year-old mother of seven children, aged from two to 13. Still, she hopes for more. “We want another two, preferably boys,” she laughs, before adding more seriously: “It will be easier for them to make their living.” Um Mohammad is a resident of Beit Al-Rush, near Hebron. The southern West Bank is considered by many aid agencies as one of the areas with the worst humanitarian situations in Palestine. 

Israeli soldiers obstruct humanitarian mission of PRCS medics

The unnecessary delay of access by the Israeli soldiers for nearly an hour and prohibiting the PRCS medics from reaching the ambulance to continue the administration of emergency medical care to the critically ill patient contributed to the death of a 65 year-old male. A PRCS ambulance was stopped and delayed access for nearly an hour by the Israeli soldiers at Beit Furik checkpoint, while on route to transport a sick person in critical condition to a local hospital. 

PCRS: Israeli Army attacks peaceful solidarity march in Rafah

Rafah, Wednesday, 19 May 2004 (2:00pm) — An estimated 1000 Palestinians were attacked by Israeli Army tank fire and helicopter shelling during a peaceful march in solidarity with the residents of Tal as-Sultan, which has been under Israeli military siege and curfew for the past three days. The PRCS Emergency Operations Center (EOC) in Gaza has reported fourteen deaths and tens of injuries, several are in critical condition. According to eyewitnesses and live television reports, an Israeli Army tank fired two missiles towards the marchers and immediately after that, Apache helicopters began to fire missiles, directly hitting the marchers. 

Palestinian medics forced to flee for their safety

On Monday, Israeli forces reinvaded Rafah. This Israeli military operation has so far resulted in the death of seventeen Palestinians and more than thirty injuries. PRCS ambulances were subjected to direct Israeli gunfire, severely restricting their ability to evacuate injuries from the area. Two Israeli Army tanks coming towards it cornered one of the ambulances. Unable to leave the area, the medics in the ambulance were forced to flee for their safety. 

Israeli army in Hebron uses PRCS ambulance as shield

A PRCS ambulance was used by Israeli soldiers as shield entering Aroub refugee camp. Israeli soldiers stopped the ambulance at the entrance of the refugee camp and initially denied it permission to continue. Israeli soldiers began searching the ambulance, and one of the soldiers threatened the crew that they would be shot if they did not follow orders. The soldier then ordered the ambulance driver to drive into the camp very slowly without turning on the siren. The driver was obliged to continue driving further into the camp when suddenly the soldiers began to fire at the direction of camp residents. 

PRCS medic beaten and detained by Israeli soldiers

On 11 January 2004, a PRCS medic was beaten, detained and threatened with fatal harm by Israeli soldiers during a routine transfer of patients from Nablus to Ramallah. The ambulance was carrying a child with a cardiac condition and a disabled person suffering from leg injuries. According to the medics’ affidavit, the ambulance was allowed to cross the Howwara checkpoint. However, Israeli soldiers on Al-Sawia road stopped the ambulance. Israeli soldiers searched the ambulance and then refused to allow the ambulance to pass. Later, the ambulance was allowed to pass after coordination with the ICRC