MAP launches West Bank emergency response as nine killed in Jenin

The Palestinian Ministry of Health report that nine Palestinians, including an elderly woman, have been killed by Israeli forces who launched an armed raid on Jenin refugee camp in the occupied West Bank today, 26 January. At least 20 other Palestinians have been injured and four are in a critical condition.

These latest killings come amid escalating Israeli military violence in the West Bank. So far in 2023, at least 30 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces, including five children. This marks a further intensification of attacks on Palestinians following 2022, in which Israeli forces killed more Palestinians in the West Bank than any year since the UN began recording data in 2005.

Medical Aid for Palestinians (MAP) is deeply concerned by spiralling violence against Palestinians, and the limited capacity of hospitals and first responders to cope.

MAP CEO Melanie Ward, in the West Bank this week, said: “The medics and experts I’ve been speaking to tell us they’re simply not equipped to deal with the influx of casualties they are seeing due to escalating Israeli military violence here. As the situation continues to deteriorate, they need international support now more than ever.”

“That is why we at MAP are today launching an emergency appeal for the West Bank, to support the life-saving efforts of Palestinian hospitals and paramedic teams.”

As part of our upscaled emergency response, MAP will provide lifesaving equipment and medical supplies to hospitals and Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS) medical teams. MAP will also be training paramedics in trauma care, through PRCS, and providing mobile clinic services and first aid training to marginalised communities in Area C of the West Bank, through the Palestinian Medical Relief Society (PMRS).

Please donate to support MAP’s emergency response

Impunity fuelling repeated attacks on healthcare

MAP is also appalled by repeated violations against Palestinian health workers, fuelled by persistent impunity. During the raid on Jenin, Palestine Red Crescent Society (PRCS) emergency responders and paramedics were obstructed by Israeli soldiers while trying to evacuate and treat the wounded. Israeli forces also reportedly shot at an ambulance with live ammunition, causing damage to the windscreen.

“We feel as though our lives do not matter, and every Palestinian is facing immense danger. Even those who are trying to save lives are not safe themselves.”

“The ambulance driver tried to treat an injured Palestinian who was lying on the floor, but Israeli forces shot at the ambulance and prevented the driver from reaching the wounded individual,” said Wissam Baker, the Head of the Jenin Government Hospital.

Palestinian Health Minister, Mai al-Kaileh, described the situation in Jenin as ‘critical’ and said that Israeli forces also fired tear gas at a children’s ward in the Jenin Government Hospital.

Aseel Baidoun, MAP’s Advocacy and Communications Manager in the West Bank, said: “What Israeli forces did today in Jenin, and what has been happening everyday across the West Bank, must no longer be met with silence from the international community. Attacks on Palestinian healthcare have been happening for so long with zero accountability.”

“We have reached a point where I can say we are all frightened. We feel as though our lives do not matter, and every Palestinian is facing immense danger. Even those who are trying to save lives are not safe themselves,” said Aseel.

Today, Palestinians across the West Bank have called a general strike, and protests in response to Israel’s ongoing discriminatory policies are taking place. Amid a deepening health and humanitarian crisis, and the recent formation of Israel’s far-right government, there is a real danger that violence against Palestinians could escalate further in East Jerusalem and risk a spill-over into Gaza.

The international community, including the UK, can and must do much more to uphold international law, protect civilians and healthcare, and end impunity for violations of Palestinians’ rights to health and dignity.

We need your help to respond to the emergency in the West Bank. Please consider donating today so we can respond rapidly to the growing health crisis.


Photo credit: Palestine Red Crescent Society.

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