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Now there’s a ceasefire in Gaza, assisting communities in the Strip is of the highest priority. The week-long war between Gaza and Israel has left many people in desperate need of medical items, drinking water and blankets, among other things. Caritas Jerusalem’s health team - two coordinators, medical staff and two psychiatrists – are making an assessment of the emergency needs of Gazans. Caritas Jerusalem’s work will be mainly through its mobile clinic, the medical centre and also through the 180 community agents who they trained to help with the local population’s health needs. Post-war Gaza: What have we learned? Visit Caritas Jerusalem's website | Press Release (19 November 2012) Listen to an interview with Vatican Radio in French of Bishop William Shomali, auxiliary bishop of Jerusalem.
Harout Bedrossian, communications officer for Caritas Jerusalem Finally it is quiet today. Last night’s ceasefire between Palestinian militants in Gaza and Israel put an end to a week of brutal warfare which caused suffering on both sides of the border.
Salem Boulos Sweilem, a father of five, dies from fear when bombs fall near his home, writes Ameen Sabbagh from Caritas Jerusalem. On the 19th of November 2012, in the middle of the roar of Israeli warplanes that are constantly bombing Gaza. Salem, a close neighbour to the Caritas Health Centre in Shate Refugee Camp died. On that particular day Salem felt very exhausted and frustrated from lack of sleep, so he went to bed to get some rest. That night Israeli warplanes dropped four missiles each weighing more than a ton on and around the Palestine Stadium, which is about 100 metres from the Caritas Health Centre.
Harout Bedrossian is a communications officer for Caritas Jerusalem. He’s been sending us frequent updates on the situation in Gaza. Here’s the latest. We’re technically into day 8 of Operation Pillar of Cloud. I woke up very optimistic today after last night’s announcement of a ceasefire being brokered by Egypt, but was very disappointed when I switched on the T.V. this morning and found out that nothing had changed on the ground. The bloodshed, the madness, the slaughter of innocent children, women and civilians is still going on… The ceasefire, which was announced from Cairo, was supposed to begin at midnight between Monday and Tuesday. Some twenty minutes after the announcement, the Israeli Air Force (IAF) dropped leaflets in parts of Gaza urging people to evacuate their homes “immediately”. “For your own safety, you are required to immediately evacuate your homes and move toward Gaza City centre,” leaflets dropped over […]
The Gaza-Israeli conflict is in its sixth day and the bombardments and lack of adequate help is weighing heavily on the Gazan population. Israel also continues to come under rocket attack from militants in Gaza. Today we spoke to Caritas staff on the ground in Gaza, Jerusalem and Ramallah. Ameen Sabbagh, a coordinator for Caritas in Gaza, said: “I want to tell you about last night. Israel bombed the building next to the Caritas health centre and damaged the buildings around it. An elderly man who was part of a Christian family in a nearby house was injured and later died of a heart attack from the shock of the attack. “The situation is very bad. The Caritas health centres are closed and there are just a four or so hospitals open in Gaza. Medicines and emergency essentials are in short supply. “Caritas staff can’t go to work because there […]
Caritas Jerusalem’s outgoing director Claudette Habesch says there is an urgent need for humanitarian relief efforts in Gaza in response to an upsurge in attacks between Israeli forces and Palestinian militants. Speaking to Caritas Italy staff in Rome, she expressed deep concern over the rising casualties. Mrs. Habesch feared the possibility of an end to hostilities between Palestinians and Israelis was becoming more remote. Fighting has intensified in recent days following Israel’s killing of Hamas’s military chief on Wednesday and rocket attacks from Gaza on Israel. Hamas say they have launched rockets from Gaza against Jerusalem – the first time the holy city has been targeted from the Gaza Strip.
On 29th November, the world is called to show its solidarity with the Palestinian people. Here is a letter from Claudette Habesch, secretary general of Caritas Jerusalem, to mark this special day. International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian people Journée internationale de solidarité avec le peuple palestinien