Doctors for Global Health (DGH) adds its voice with those around the world in denouncing the air strikes on Gaza conducted by Israel in recent days that continue to this day.
While it is clear that rocket fire by Hamas militants against civilians should be ended because it does not help end the occupation and is also illegal under international law, Israel's response represents collective punishment on the entire Gaza population, clearly in violation of the Geneva Conventions.
Israel's disproportionately violent military attack, targeting of civilians and total blockade of the Gaza strip further violate these Conventions. Physicians for Human Rights Israel (PHR) and the Palestinian Medical Relief Society (PMRS) in Ramalah state that the health system in Gaza, in a state of near-collapse due to the blockade imposed for the last one and a half years, is overwhelmed by the current crisis and cannot provide adequate care for the hundreds of wounded and dying. The bombing of the major medicines and medical supplies store has destroyed critically needed pharmaceuticals and materials. PHR and PMRS estimate that one million dollars is needed to restock these lost supplies. Closing of all border crossings has made it impossible to transfer the severely wounded outside of Gaza to get the care they need and for necessary medical supplies to be brought in.
As United States and World citizens, we appeal to our elected representatives to push publicly for the immediate cessation of bombing and reinstatement of the cease-fire pending resumption of fairly moderated peace talks between Israelis and Palestinians.
As an organization, we have signed the Open Letter sent to President-Elect Obama drafted by the US Campaign to End the Occupation and signed by many peace, religious and grassroots' organizations.
At this time of crisis, we are in solidarity with those in Palestine and Israel who are fighting for their survival and the respect of their basic human rights.