Gaza’s share of medicine withheld in Ramallah on political decisions

[ 17/01/2011 – 10:27 AM ]


GAZA, (PIC)– The lives of 450 kidney patients are at risk as the West Bank health ministry withholds the Gaza Strip’s share of medicines in Ramallah warehouses, the Gaza health ministry said.

183 medicines are out of strategic stock, said Gaza Director General of Pharmaceuticals Munir al-Bersh. Dialysis solutions required to keep kidney patients alive are expected to run out by Tuesday.

Medicines withheld in Ramallah are not allowed out without a political decision, Bersh said.

He said Ramallah sent in 2010 only 40 per cent of Gaza’s share of a NIS 150 million budget split between the West Bank and the Gaza Strip.

Ramallah claimed earlier it supplied the strip with NIS 71 million. “Data published in the West Bank is misleading, as the source is Gaza. Several local and international parties, including Ramallah, had actually sent medical supplies to Gaza,” Bersh said.

“No more than NIS 25 million had actually reached Gaza. The rest (around NIS 46 million) was the value of donations that reached Gaza directly,” Bersh said.

NIS 60 million, or 45 per cent, of the budget was supposed to be allocated to Gaza. But Ramallah sent only NIS 25 million based on data in Gaza stating that NIS 71 million had reached.

“The policy of percolating medicines into Gaza began with the siege. It sends enough medicine for a month or two to keep pressure on citizens and the government in Gaza.”

Gaza’s share of medicine withheld in Ramallah on political decisions.

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