Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Gaza Humanitarian Situation

Ha'aretz reports deaths among Palestinians waiting to enter the Gaza Strip from Sinai:
"Four Palestinians have died in recent days awaiting entry into the Gaza Strip on the Egyptian side of the Rafah border crossing, which has been closed for nearly two weeks since the kidnapping of Israel Defense Forces soldier Gilad Shalit.

"More than 3,000 Palestinians, including 578 deemed "urgent humanitarian cases," have been stranded for 16 days inside a make-shift terminal on the Egyptian side of the crossing, the Red Cross said Monday.

"Two Palestinians died at the crossing on Tuesday - a 19-year-old woman and a 1.5-year-old infant.

"The young woman, identified as Mona Ismail, was returning from an operation in a Cairo hospital. She died as a result of a severe deterioration in her medical condition as she waited at Rafah. The infant, identified as Hamze Abu Taleb, died of heat stroke.

"Two other people also died over the past few days while waiting at the crossing. Hani Daoud, 70, suffered a heart attack after waiting nine days to return to Gaza after receiving medical treatment in Egypt. Muhammed Shuhab, 15, also died at the crossing after undergoing heart surgery in Cairo, an Egyptian official at the border said."

Meanwhile, Matthew Yglesias calls attention to the humanitarian situation inside Gaza, and Egyptian government sources suggest Hamas rejected a proposed prisoner exchange.


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