Palestine and the Coronavirus; Mohamed Hadid Speaks Out

Via MSN.

On Friday, the State of Palestine declared a state of emergency after four new cases of the coronavirus were detected in the West Bank, bringing up the total number of total infections to 35. On the other side of the mishmash that is Israel, the Gaza Strip is bracing for the blow. Although no coronavirus incidents have been reported in the western Hamas-controlled region, the lack of proper healthcare infrastructure has everyone terrified.

UN officials described Gaza’s health care system in the rise of the COVID-19 pandemic as a disaster in-the-making. The exacerbation of the situation is not a matter of if but when.

The coastal enclave is one of the most densely populated and least prepared in the world. This has prompted a number of Palestinians overseas to speak out, with Palestinian real estate mogul Mohamed Hadid at the forefront.

Hadid took to Instagram to decry the atrocities committed by Israel over the year and urged the international community to pressure it into facilitating the transfer of disinfectants, testing kits, medicine, equipment, and aid to the healthcare professionals throughout the Palestinian territories.

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There has been some panic in Palestine and fear of foreigners working in the country as a result of the coronavirus outbreak. And although panic is dangerous and not helpful, the worry isn’t completely unjustified. Israel’s control of Palestinian trade and any medicine or equipment coming in and out, means that Palestinians have no control over their own health and safety. Israel has not, and will never, prioritize the health and safety of Palestinians as much as they do their own citizens. Palestinians know that they are on their own, and they also know that their government does not have the resources to protect them. And so they are justifiably worried. No other people have to face a pandemic this dangerous with their hands tied by an occupier. The situation is even more worrying in Gaza, although no cases have been reported yet. With 1.8 million people, it is one of the most densely-populated places on earth. A coronavirus outbreak there would be an absolute catastrophe. Gaza has a significant lack of quality medical care, a deficit in medical supplies, and poorly paid personnel which has led to a protracted health crisis. This is compounded by the almost 13-year blockade by Israel and regular airstrikes which have killed and injured thousands of Palestinians. The hospitals are still reeling from the thousands who were maimed and blinded by Israeli snipers during the Great March of Return. They would never be able to absorb the countless patients from a corona virus outbreak. When a newspaper like @nytimes fails to mention Palestinians once in an article about the coronavirus outbreak in Israel, then the NYT has failed at journalism. This is not a time for politics, but a moment for solidarity from everyone. This virus will affect the most vulnerable first, but it does not differentiate. We are all in this together. The international community needs to pressure Israel to facilitate the transfer of disinfectants, testing kits, medicine, equipment, and aid workers to all internationally recognized Palestinian Territories, including Gaza, to avoid an unprecedented humanitarian tragedy. @hiddenpalestine — #hiddenpalestine #palestine #gaza #coronavirus

A post shared by Mohamedhadid. (@mohamedhadid) on

WE SAID THIS: Our thoughts and prayers are with all those affected by the tragedy in Palestine and all over the world.

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