Palestine requested coronavirus help, Israel gave it incursions, killings, arrests: Official


Secretary-General of the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) Saeb Erekat says Palestine requested cooperation from Israel to combat the current COVID-19 epidemic but instead received incursions, killings, and demolitions from the occupying regime.

The chief of the executive committee of the PLO made the remarks in a statement he delivered on Palestine television, stressing that Palestine only tried to cooperate with Israel in the fight against the new coronavirus, Palestine’s official Wafa news agency reported.

In response to our request, Israel “carried out 187 incursions in the past days, killed three Palestinians, and wounded 47 others” in the occupied West Bank, Erekat said, adding that the regime also demolished 53 Palestinians buildings and structures, and carried out “188 arrest campaigns.”

He said Israel deprived Palestinians in the East Jerusalem al-Quds of the necessary health services to fight COVID-19, and confiscated food items and refrained from disinfecting public places in the eastern sector of the city.

The COVID-19 disease, caused by a new coronavirus, was transmitted from wildlife to people in the Chinese city of Wuhan late last year. It has affected 210 countries and territories across the globe, has so far infected more than 1,956,450 people and killed over 123,480.

The World Health Organization (WHO) has declared the outbreak a global pandemic.

Official figures by Palestine’s Health Ministry show that as of Tuesday, 308 people have tested positive for COVID-19 and two others have died in the occupied West Bank and the besieged Gaza Strip.

Israel said on Tuesday that the new coronavirus had infected 11,868 people and killed 117 others.

Gaza Strip, under a tight Israeli-imposed land, air, and sea blockade since 2007, faces an alarming health situation. Its central medical laboratory announced earlier this month that it had run out of necessary supplies to administer COVID-19 tests.

The situation will definitely delay the necessary procedures for ending the isolation of hundreds of quarantined people who have already given samples for testing.

Various rights groups and organizations have so far pleaded the global community and different international organizations to pressure Tel Aviv to lift the siege and allow international donors to provide Gazans with necessary medical supplies.

The Health Ministry in Gaza has already issued a distress call to the world.

The majority of the population in Gaza lives in densely-populated refugee camps where social distancing is not feasible, and the contagious disease can rampage the besieged sliver if necessary safety measures are not taken immediately. Nearly two million Palestinians live in Gaza.

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