Over 1,000 children injured since 30 March – health facilities unable to cope
DUBLIN/EAST JERUSALEM, 16 May 2018 – UNICEF and partners have delivered two truck-loads of urgently needed medical supplies to the Gaza Strip – enough to meet the needs of an estimated 70,000 people. The drugs and medical equipment include antibiotics, saline solution and syringes for the treatment of injuries.
Since 30 March, over 1,000 children were injured in violence in the Gaza Strip. Many of these injuries are severe and potentially life-altering, including amputations.
Recent violence has exacerbated the already weak health system in the Gaza Strip which is crumbling because of severe power cuts and shortages of fuel, medicine and equipment. Medical facilities are buckling under the strain of additional casualties wounded in the recent violence, many with complex and life-threatening injuries.
The intensifying violence has worsened the plight of children whose lives have already been unbearably difficult for many years.
Children should be protected – not targeted, used in violence or put in risky situations. As tensions rise across the State of Palestine, UNICEF calls on all actors to put in place specific measures to keep children out of harm’s way and avoid child casualties.
Note to editors
On the situation of children in the State of Palestine:
- In the Gaza Strip, half of all children depend on humanitarian assistance, and one in four children needs psychosocial care. Their families received 4/5 hours of electricity per day and 9 of 10 do not have regular direct access to clean water.
- Children in the Gaza Strip have lived through three major rounds of conflict in the past decade.
- Across the State of Palestine, 8,000 children and 400 teachers require a protective presence to reach school as they pass through check points on the way.
- Children in the State of Palestine experience many forms of violence. Over 90% of them report having experienced violence at home, at school or on the streets.
- Youth unemployment is extremely high at more than 40% nationwide and over 60% in Gaza.
- Despite high enrolment in primary education (94%), 1 out of 4 boys over 15 is out of school.
Photos available on request.
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Tamara Kummer, UNICEF Middle East and North Africa, email@example.com +962 797 588 550