Dear Partners and friends
This update is based on our communication with whom we managed to reach from DSPR NECC Area Committee and leading staff there.
It’s obvious that attacking Gaza continues uninterrupted, the number of casualties is accelerating, the basic needs for life are almost exhausted, and the news about water and food arriving in Gaza is not even a drop in a sea of needs, as it’s not reaching people and according to UN-OCHA, it’s less than 3% of the daily consumption of the commodities in Gaza. The biggest concern is the fear and horror people are going through where no possible safe place anywhere in Gaza, and those who are still alive, live only by God’s mercy.
The level of destruction is unbelievable, one of our colleagues said ”They changed the face of Gaza, you can’t recognize the locations and you feel that this is a strange place, as if you have never been there”. No further damage happened in the DSPR main building, but our clinic in AlShagaeieh, was impacted and the hall used for the children's activities was burned. No news about the other clinic in AlDaraj, we lost contact with people there. Rafah clinic has not been hit, but not functioning so far, we daily discuss the security status of that clinic, and we are waiting for the moment that we can function there without jeopardizing the safety and security of our staff. Our staff there are coordinating with UNICEF to have the centre functional, with some support from them to offer services to the people there, including food and water distribution, but the area is still under attacks and airstrikes.
We tried to get detailed information about our staff beneficiaries and property, but the connections are not possible with many of them. The news about the staff until the last 3 days says that all of them were alive, we pray and hope that this to continue be their case. During the last three days many of them scattered, almost all of them were dislocated, many went to the southern part of Gaza, some others with their relatives in different living places, and all Christian staff and most of the Area Committee members and their families are in Orthodox and Catholic Churches. After the attack on the building in the Orthodox Church’s compound, people were scared much more than before, more than half of the 550 Christians refuging in the Catholic Church’s compound moved from the church property to the exact Church building, with some other families in the Orthodox Church building.
The 5 severely injured persons who stayed alive after the attack on the church’s compound are in hospitals now, 4 of them in Ahli Hospital and one is in Alshifa Hospital, none of them remains in a critical case, but they have severe injuries, one spinal cord another have fractured jaw.
Resources are scarcer now, no electric currency there, and the only source of power is the generators which work on fuel, while the fuel is not available in the stations nor permitted to enter Gaza at all. They try to rationalize the use of the remaining stored fuel to the maximum. It’s still possible to find some shops with some remaining tent food and other materials, but it’s so scarce and about to finish. The food, water and medical supplies that reached Rafah in southern Gaza were 2 trucks of water, 3 trucks of food and 15 trucks of medical supplies. As mentioned above, it’s a tiny amount of around 2.5 million. Israel is preventing any material from reaching northern Gaza.
Some psychosocial support is offered to some people, especially to those who lost family members in the church, it’s not an easy task to be done by anybody, but people are trying to be as supportive as possible to each other.
West Bank is under closure, with no movement between districts, Israel is taking advantage of the media concentrating on Gaza to intensify its violations in the West Bank and Jerusalem. The arrests campaign targets activists and the Gaza workers, who were working inside Israel before the war, after they sent them to the West Bank, mainly Bethlehem and Ramallah, they are chasing them to be arrested. The eviction of Bedouins in different areas is taking place, more than 500 as UN-OCHA reported, the army responding very violently to the demonstrations, and settlers’ attacks are increasing.
DSPR, in cooperation with Evangelic Lutheran Church in Jordan and Holy Land, LWF and HEKS/EPE, and with the support of ACT Secretariat, we are finalizing the Appeal which hopefully will be sent to the secretariat today. The appeal is responding to the needs in Gaza and West Bank.
It’s an extremely difficult time in Gaza, you are called by our colleagues in Gaza to pray for their safety, and they keep telling us to pray for their safety and the safety of all people in Gaza, they lost hope in politicians and governments, I have been told by one of them “Whoever not calling or working for an immediate ceasefire is contributing to our killing and the killing of the innocent civilians in Gaza, he or she is guilty and criminal”
“The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear?” Psalms 27:1
Nader Abu Amsha
MECC DSPR Central Committee