The Palestinian Red Crescent’s ambulance teams evacuated 31 preterm babies from Shifa Hospital on Sunday in collaboration with the World Health Organization and the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, according to a post on the group’s Facebook page.
The newborns were moved to the south of Gaza “in preparation for their transfer to the Emirates Hospital in Rafah,” according to the group.
Later in the day, Ashraf Al-Qidra, the spokesperson for the Health Ministry in Gaza controlled by Hamas, announced in a news conference that the premature babies previously in Al-Shifa hospital had been transferred to Tal Alsultan Hospital in Rafah. Tomorrow, they are scheduled to be sent to Egyptian hospitals along with their families.
Four days after the Israeli military incursion into Al-Shifa hospital, the largest in Gaza, the World Health Organization (WHO) labeled the facility a “death zone.” This characterization stemmed from the shutdown of medical services, leading to the death of several patients. The UN chief has urged a ceasefire due to the ongoing attacks on the besieged enclave.
Top UN officials have echoed the call for an improvement in conditions for Gaza’s 2.3 million residents, with 1.7 million displaced since October 7. During this period, over 12,000 Palestinians in besieged Gaza have lost their lives.