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Gaza: Doctors Plead End to Attack, Netanyahu’s Impunity Denounced

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Posted on Jul 14, 2014

Image from 'Democracy Now!'

After a week of relentless bombing by Israel’s Netanyahu government, foreign and local doctors on the scene in Gaza and a Palestinian attorney plead with the international community to make the assault on civilians there stop, “Democracy Now!” reports.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has ruled out a cease-fire, saying it is “not even on the agenda.” On Sunday, Netanyahu said he does not know when the assault on Gaza will end, saying “it might take much more time.”

“Democracy Now!” describes the toll of death and displacement:

Thousands of Gazans have fled their homes amidst a relentless Israeli bombing campaign that has now killed more than 170 people, most of them civilians, since it began a week ago. The United Nations estimates at least 80 percent of the dead are civilian, of whom 20 percent are children — at least 36 dead. More than 1,200 Palestinians have been wounded, nearly two-thirds women and children. Some 940 homes have reportedly been severely damaged or destroyed, 400,000 people are without electricity, and 17,000 people are displaced. Hamas has fired an estimated 700 rockets into Israel, causing no direct killings but leaving an Israeli teen critically wounded.

On Monday, the program spoke with two doctors and one lawyer about the ongoing conflict.

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Palestinian attorney Diana Buttu, who served as a legal adviser to Palestinians in negotiations with Israel, as well as to Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, said: “When Israel talks about who it’s targeting and what it’s targeting, they’ve never proffered any proof or any evidence for what it is they’re trying to hit.” She added: “At the end of the day, as much as Israel tries to claim they are not targeting civilians, they are — and the casualties speak volumes.”

Dr. Mona El-Farra, director of Gaza projects for the Middle East Children’s Alliance and health chair of the Palestinian Red Crescent Society of the Gaza Strip, has treated severe burns and unexplained wounds that suggest Israel may be using banned weapons. “We are not just numbers, we are human beings,” she told the program.

Norwegian doctor Mads Gilbert recently submitted a report to the United Nations on the state of the Gaza health sector in 2014. He has been treating hundreds of victims wounded in Israel’s ongoing assault, including young children, and says hospitals are operating without electricity, water and proper medical supplies. He said medical supplies are not what Gazans need most: “As a medical doctor, my appeal is don’t send bandages, don’t send syringes, don’t send medical teams. The most important medical thing you can do now is to force Israel to stop the bombing and lift the siege of Gaza.” He continued: “Where is the decency in the U.S. government allowing Israel this impunity to punish the whole civilian population in Gaza?”

‘Democracy Now!’:

—Adapted from “Democracy Now!” by Alexander Reed Kelly.


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