International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) teams are working to assess the needs of the civilians who are bearing the brunt of the escalation in violence in Gaza and Israel. As the death toll and injuries rise, the ICRC is looking to ramp up its humanitarian response.
In Gaza, hundreds of airstrikes on the densely packed strip left thousands of residents displaced. According to the Ministry of health, more than one hundred people were killed and many more injured. A health system that was already strained due to a heavy COVID-19 outbreak, now faces an additional challenge with many injured needing medical care.
“In the last days have we have seen a dramatic increase of violence. Our teams have rarely been able to move. A de-escalation is really needed so that we can assess the humanitarian situation on the ground and deliver much-needed aid, said Mirjam Mueller head of ICRC’s Sub Delegation in Gaza. I have been here only a couple of days as head of Sub Delegation in Gaza and it has been heart-breaking to see how the situation has been unfolding,” she added.
Yesterday, the ICRC has donated 3 war wounded kits enough to provide medical treatment for 150 seriously injured patients. In addition, we have donated ten stretchers, carriers with movable side rails and five hospital beds to the newly opened ward at Shifa hospital in Gaza.
On Wednesday, a team from the International Committee of the Red Cross visited the village of Dahmash in central Israel, where a rocket killed two civilians. In addition, in Petah Tikva a rocket fell between residential buildings, damaging five of them, one seriously.
“We heard that one of the residents was injured, the rest managed to get to the safe room. However, after the rockets a fire broke out and the people who were in the safe room had to run away and wait on the streets because of the smoke, “said Pawel Zug, ICRC delegate for the protection of the civilian population.
“For us the International Committee of the Red Cross, it’s really important that we are present in the field and that we can get first-hand information, we can see things ourselves so we can properly document and assess the impact of the ongoing conflict on the civilian population.,” he continued.
Beyond the visible injures of the conflict, the psychological trauma people are left with is often overlooked, it has immense impact and people need support in dealing with it. Young children and teenagers are part of a generation that have already lived through several flare-ups as well as daily pressure and fear.
If the fighting escalates further, the region faces a major humanitarian emergency. The ICRC is calling for the destruction and violence to stop now.
You can read the most recent statement from the ICRC Near and Middle East Regional Director here
Note to editors:
1. Established in 1863, the ICRC operates worldwide helping people affected by conflict and armed violence and promoting the laws that protect victims of war. A neutral, independent and impartial organization, its mandate stems essentially from the Geneva Conventions of 1949. We are based in Geneva, Switzerland, and employ over 20,000 people in more than 100 countries.
2. The ICRC has been present in Israel and the occupied territories since 1967. We promote compliance with international humanitarian law and work to mitigate the impact of violence, conflict and occupation on civilians through protection activities and assistance programmes. The ICRC visits detainees in Israeli and Palestinian places of detention and works to maintain family links through the Family Visit Programme. We also support livelihood projects and help improve access to essential services like water and electricity in Gaza. Above all, we stand up for people impacted by conflict and promote their rights and dignity. The ICRC has offices in Tel Aviv, the West Bank and Gaza and supports the work of the Palestine Red Crescent Society and Magen David Adom in Israel.
For more information, please contact our spokespeople:
· Suhair Zakkout (Gaza): email@example.com , Phone: +972 599 255 381
· Christoph Hanger (Tel Aviv/Jerusalem): firstname.lastname@example.org , Phone: +972 526 019 150
· Yahia Masswadeh (Jerusalem): email@example.com Phone: +972 526 019 148
· Sara Alzawqari (Beirut): firstname.lastname@example.org Phone : +961 3 138 353
· Ruth Hetherington (Geneva): email@example.com , Phone: +33 6 33 28 88 23
On-screen credit ICRC
Shooting date 13.05.2021
Country/Location - Gaza City, Central Israel
Language - English
Producer - Hisham Mhanna/ ICRC/Christoph Hanger/ICRC/Francisco Pavon ICRC
Cameraperson - Yousef Al-Mash´harawi/Christoph Hanger
Copyright / Details of restriction if applicable - None
Duration - 00:04:37
00:00:00 – 00:00:12
Building coming down in Gaza City
00:00:12 – 00:00:16
Destruction of building in Gaza City
00:00:16 – 00:00:20
People outside of a destroyed building in Gaza city
00:00:20 – 00:00:25
Burning rubble (Gaza)
00:00:25 – 00:00:30
Destroyed street with residents (Gaza)
00:00:30 – 00:00:45
Building hit by and airstrike (Gaza)
00:00:45 – 00:00:55
Destroyed building (Gaza)
00:00:55 – 00:01:02
Building hit by a rocket (Petah Tikva, Israel)
00:01:02 – 00:01:05
Entry of building hit by a rocket (Petah Tikval, Israel)
00:01:05 – 00:01:10
Destroyed kitchen of one of the apartments inside the hit building (Petah Tikva, Israel)
00:01:10 – 00:01:26
Damages inside one of the apartments of the damaged building (Petah Tikva, Israel)
00:01:26 – 00:01:32
Destroyed cars (Dahmash, Israel)
00:01:32 – 00:01:55
Footage of destroyed cars and damaged house (Dahmash, Israel)
00:01:55 – 00:02:44
Interview with Pawel Zug – ICRC Protection delegate
“We heard that one of the residents was injured, the rest managed to get to the safe room. However, after the rockets a fire broke out and the people who were in the safe room had to run away and wait on the streets because of the smoke.
For us as the International Committee of the Red Cross, it’s really important that we are present in the field and that we can get first-hand information, we can see things ourselves so we can properly document and assess the impact of the ongoing conflict on the civilian population.”
00:02:36 – 00:02:56
Explosions (Gaza City)
00:02:59 – 00:03:22
People in the street next to a destroyed house (Gaza City)
00:03:22 – 00:03:28
Destroyed house (Gaza City)
00:03:28 – 00:03:41
Street art (Gaza City)
00:03:41 – 00:03:49
ICRC truck with medical supplies (Gaza City)
00:03:49 – 00:04:06
Unloading of ICRC donated medical supplies (Gaza City)
00:04:06 – 00:04:37
Interview with Mirjam Mueller Head of ICRC’s Sub Delegation in Gaza
“In the last days have we have seen a dramatic increase of violence. Our teams have rarely been able to move. A de-escalation is really needed so that we can assess the humanitarian situation on the ground and deliver much-needed aid.
I have been here only a couple of days as head of Sub Delegation in Gaza and it has been heart-breaking to see how the situation has been unfolding.”