The Palestinian Minister of Health Mai al-Kalia told the Voice of Palestine radio on Tuesday that Israel “obstructed” the entry of 100,000 COVID-19 testing swabs that were destined for the West Bank. As a result, the Ministry will only have enough swabs to last them for three days, after which time the West Bank would run out.
Palestinians in Gaza City on September 17, 2020. (Photo: Ashraf Amra/APA Images) Latest: 179,071 tested…
As part of COVID-19 series in Palestine, Yumna Patel traveled to the Jordan Valley to see what life is like for Palestinians there as they fight two battles: one against the coronavirus, and one against annexation. “In this area, the occupation is even worse for us than the coronavirus pandemic. The occupation has taken advantage of the coronavirus pandemic to take over more land in the Jordan Valley,” Motaz Bisharat, a Palestinian activist based in the northern Jordan Valley tells Mondoweiss.
In the last week the total number of COVID-19 cases in Gaza have tripled, reaching 1,551 yesterday. The International Crisis Group warns that once Gaza reaches 280 new infections daily, “the number of people requiring treatment will exceed the capacity of local hospitals.”
What started off as fear of the unknown, has now settled into somewhat of a feeling of indifference, and detached acceptance. It’s not that people don’t care about getting sick or spreading the virus, but more so that they are tired of their lives being put on hold for something that at this point seems inevitable.
Water shortages in Gaza due to Israeli fuel cuts are leaving Palestinians in a double crisis: a COVID-19 lockdown combined with fears over meeting basic needs.
Gaza Community Mental Health Programme head Yasser Abu Jamei describes how Gaza is responding to the outbreak of COVID-19: “The latest developments were surprising to the overcrowded community who are still in shock.”
Aya Al Ghazzawi shares a day in the life in Gaza during the COVID-19 pandemic, “The coronavirus is just another siege, a quarantine inside a quarantine.”
Imagine being left to fend for yourself against the coronavirus, as your home is threatened by demolition, and your family is living under military occupation. That is the reality for Palestinians living in the village of al-Walaja. Watch the second episode in a five-part Mondoweiss series on how Palestinians are surviving under both a global pandemic, and the Israeli occupation.