MAP joins Safeguarding Health in Conflict Coalition in highlighting global attacks on healthcare

Today, the Safeguarding Health in Conflict Coalition (SHCC) released its eighth annual report, documenting global incidences of attacks and threats against health workers, facilities, and transport around the world.

The report cites 806 incidents of violence against or obstruction of healthcare in 43 countries and territories in ongoing wars and violent conflicts in 2020. Medical Aid for Palestinians (MAP) contributed to a section on violence against healthcare in the occupied Palestinian territory (oPt), where attacks on and obstruction to healthcare, particularly emergency healthcare, continued throughout 2020.

The report identified 61 incidents of violence or obstruction caused by Israeli forces in the oPt last year, including injuries and arrests of healthcare workers and damage caused to health facilities. The attacks compounded the challenges faced by the oPt’s health system, which was already struggling to prepare for and respond to the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

These attacks are part of a persistent pattern of such attacks over many years, which have occurred with impunity. Most recently, Israel damaged or destroyed 30 healthcare facilities in its 11-day military assault on Gaza and there have been 89 attacks on healthcare – including physical assaults, damage to ambulances and raids on clinics – amid Israel’s use of force against protesters in the West Bank including East Jerusalem since May.

The SHCC report findings reveal that, on the fifth anniversary of the UN Security Council’s Resolution 2286 on protection of healthcare in conflict, acts of violence against healthcare have not been curbed and impunity for those who commit them has remained a constant.

The full 2020 data cited in the report can be accessed via Attacks on Health Care in Countries in Conflict on Insecurity Insight’s page on the Humanitarian Data Exchange.

Last week, MAP wrote to the UK government and other UN Security Council Members, urging them to raise the issue of attacks on Palestinian healthcare at the Council. You can read our letter here.

Download the full report.


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