Muntzer is 8 years old and from the Gaza Strip. He suffers from Lymphoma, a blood cell tumour developing from lymphatic tissues. (MEE/Eloise Bollack)

Israel prevents Palestinian cancer patients from treatment


Israeli Major General and coordinator of Israeli government activities in the Occupied Palestinian territories, Yoav Mordechai, admitted that the government prevents cancer patients in Gaza from receiving treatment.

Earlier this week, Israel imposed a travel ban for patients through the Beit Hanoun (Erez) crossing in the north of the Strip. Israel has given no reason for the ban on the patients who were previously allowed to enter Israel on medical grounds.

Mordechai said in an interview with the Palestinian daily news paper Al-Quds that his government has its excuses to prevent the Gaza cancer patients from treatment. Reportedly, he claimed that the cancer patients from Gaza are commissioned by Hamas to “sabotage” the Israeli economy.

Soha Hussein, a wife of 53-year old cancer patient from Gaza, emphasizes in an interview with days of Palestine: “My husband is too sick to be able to serve himself. How can you imagine he would be able to leave the hospital and collect intelligence information?”

But Yoav Mordechai is of different opinion. “Hamas cynical exploitation of Israeli entry permits is forcing Israel to think twice before it issues permits to Gazans,” he said, warning that the Israeli authorities to “close the Strip and completely prevent travel of Gazans from the Strip.”

It seems that he ignored the fact that his apartheid state has been placing a strict siege on the Gaza Strip since 2006.

According to teleSUR, Palestinian female cancer patients participated in a sit-in in Gaza this week in order to protest Israel’s refusal to allow female cancer patients from Gaza to cross into Israel to seek medical help, which they have been receiving for years.

The sit-in was organized by the Aid and Hope Program in front of the Ministry of Civil Affairs in Gaza. The group provides aid and support for cancer patients in the Palestinian enclave.

“Our message is to demand a clear explanation over the travel ban imposed on women cancer patients in the Gaza Strip,” said Eman Shanan, the general director of the AHP program in Gaza, according to teleSUR.

“These women have been receiving treatment for years. Our second message is directed to the Ministry of Health that they must insure the required treatment for them in case this travel ban continues,” Shanan added.

As a cancer survivor herself, Eman Shanan added that the United Nations’ World Health Organization should take the necessary measures to save the lives of these women:

“This is clearly a premeditated death sentence by Israel,” she warned.

According to the Gaza Health Ministry, there are more than 14,600 cancer patients in Gaza. The AHP also says that 30 percent of them have been able to receive medical treatment in Israeli hospitals.

Many of the hospitals in Gaza simply cannot provide the optimized treatment for cancer, as a result of Israeli attacks on the hospitals and that access to medical supplies is hardly available. At the same time, according to an interview with Dr. Hamdan in Al-Akhbar, “patients in Gaza have no access to the medication they desperately need for their treatment. Even under normal circumstances, there are 45 kinds of cancer treatments that are not available in Gaza. Not to mention that from time to time, the Ministry of Health in Gaza declares acute shortages of medecine.” And on top of that there are only four doctors available for the almost 15.000 cancer patients.

Israel has in the past used cancer-inducting bombs such as Dense Inter metal Explosive, known as DIME and Depleted uranium. According to nuclear news,  people living in the dispersal zone will acquire cancers, birth defects , still births, and other known, unknown or untraceable and undiagnosable diseases.


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