The fuel crisis in Gaza–now in its fifth month–is causing extended power outages that severely disrupt the lives, health and livelihood of the region’s 1.6 million residents. It also severely affects Gaza’s fuel-dependent fishing industry, already crippled by access restrictions to fishing waters imposed by Israel’s blockade.
Water shortage in Gaza
The Gaza Power Plant produced electricity at less than 30 per cent of capacity in April, causing severe disruption to basic services, including water, health and sanitation.
Oxfam‘s partner, Coastal Municipal Water Utility says the situation is critical, with up to 40 per cent of the 1.6 million population under blockade getting water in their houses only once every four days.
The situation will get even more critical as summer approaches and demand for water escalates.
Without regular supplies of fuel to run pumps, water and sewage facilities, including water wells, sewage pump stations, wastewater treatment plants, desalination units and water lifting stations remain vulnerable to collapse, leaving entire towns exposed to all the ensuing public health risks.
Um Bader and her neighbours, citizens of Al- Zarqa, are seriously worried. This neighbourhood outside Gaza City previously had no municipal water and sanitation services, but an Oxfam project recently connected houses to a sewage network and water supply.
But without sufficient fuel to power the pumps, they are afraid they will soon return to living without running water and with cesspits overflowing into the streets.
“When the work started in our street I couldn’t believe that someone had finally taken us into consideration,” Um Bader says. “We were living in horrible conditions– our house was flooded everyday with sewage seeping out of septic tanks, our furniture ruined, and children kept falling in the sewage pools. But now I’m worried because the fuel crisis keeps dragging on and the pumping stations break down all the time. I’m terrified I’ll see the sewage flooding our streets again.”
Just the stench of sewage strikes Um Bader like a nasty flashback as she recalls the infections and diseases her family experienced for decades without water and sanitation services.
“I was constantly cleaning the house. The stress, the depression all this brought with it, was too much to handle.”
|Ministery declares state of emergency – Photography|
Articles 55 and 56 of the Fourth Geneva Convention clearly establish that Israel, as the occupying power, not only has a duty to ensure medical supplies reach hospitals in the OPT, but to ensure and maintain the services of the hospitals too. As High Contracting Parties to the Geneva Conventions, other states not only have a moral duty but also a legal obligation to ensure Israel abides by its commitments to the protected population of the OPT.
UN Convention of the Rights of the Child, As a States Party to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, Israel is obliged under Article 24 of the treaty to recognise the right of every child under its effective jurisdiction “to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health and to facilities for the treatment of illness and rehabilitation of health. States Parties shall strive to ensure that no child is deprived of his or her right of access to such health care services”.
Not only the 7-month old baby, but 173 children died due to lack of a permit:
- 173 Children died due 2 obstructed healthcare: Report Al-Mezan
- Download the Full Report of Al-Mezan (PDF)
More Resources or related information:
- Palestinian deaths following infringement of right to medical treatment – B’ Tselem – Report
- 35 babies died at Israeli checkpoints – Report
- Israel Kills Dialysis in Gaza – 450 Patients Lives Are In Danger – Report
- Dialysis in Paralysis | Electronic Intifada – Report
- Factsheet on Gazan Children’s Access to Medical Care – Al Mezan | 173 children died – Report
- UK Diplomat wife dies after forced to renew Jerusalem permit – Report
- 2 Children & Lives of Dozens of Others Endangered Israel’s Infringement of Medical Care – Report
- Infant close 2 death as Israel denies medication – Report
- Starve Them; Shoot Them then Give Them Cancer – Report
PUT PALESTINIANS ON A DIET – Media Bury documents revealing israel’s deliberate policy of near starvation for Gaza – Report
- Israel to Supreme Court to prevent exposure of document containing minimal calorie requirements for Gaza – May1, 2011 – Report
- Israel Restricts the Access of Gaza Patients to Urgent Medical Treatment if their Condition is Not Life-Threatening | In violation of Medical Ethics and International Law | Al mezan | June 30, 2010 – Report
- Children and Armed Conflict: Developments in the OPT | UN | April 13, 2010 – Report
Medical care by asked/forced collaboration
- Palestinians hoping to leave Gaza Strip asked to collaborate with Israel – PHR Isael – Dec 28, 2011 – Report
Healthcare or neglect of healthcare in Prisons
- Doctoring the Evidence Abandoning the Victim – Complicty of Israeli physicians in torture – PHR – Report
- Gaza Siege devastates Health care – Jan 2, 2011 – video
- Avoidable Death of Pregnant women & their Unborn at Israeli Checkpoints – video
- If U have no idea about avoidable mortality by Israel’s deliberate policies: Meet BABY FIRAS – video
VERY IMPORTANT & SHOCKING REPORT ABOUT EFFECTS FOR HEALTH BY POLICIES & DISCRIMINATION OF MEDICAL CARE & ACCESS TO CARE.
- Arab-Palestinian Citizens of Israel: Discrimination in Access to Health; Lower Health – PHR - Report
While in the horrible holocaust, 1 in 6, so 1 million people died of the Nazi but exactly similar deliberate deprivation, Israel is doing exactly the same to Palestinians. Research (see link below) showed the annual deathrate by violent & passive aggression is about 5000 deaths a year. Called Avoidable mortality or Excess Death.
For the sake of children and ill people in Palestine, share this post as wide as you can and keep sharing it. Health is no choice for many, right to medical care is a Human Right. Infringement of such is a passive form of aggression which policies Israel deliberately deploys with the intention to ethnic cleanse.
- More about Avoidable Mortality - Research by Dr. Gideon Polya
- For all related news about health / related issues in Palestine - Category Health
SHARING = CARING!
Due to unbelievable & increasing shocking news like this, this post will be updated continuously the coming days with related news and more resources. Please keep checking for updates.
How many more dead corpses of Palestinians and their children does the international community need to see in order to act?
How many more cruelties and violations of Human Rights, Regulations and International Law will be needed?
How long so the world intervenes in this ongoing warcrime and it will be stopped once and for all?