In Paris, as in New York and Berlin, NGOs spoke in unison on December 18 to encourage the international community to endorse an “immediate and lasting ceasefire” in the Gaza Strip, where he Israeli army continues its bombings in retaliation for the attack perpetrated on October 7 by Hamas. In the hours that follow, the United Nations Security Council must decide on a new text calling for an “urgent and lasting cessation of hostilities”, after a previous aborted attempt ten days earlier.
Non-governmental organizations are warning of an unprecedented humanitarian catastrophe affecting the lives of 2.3 million Palestinians. On the medical front, after two months of bombing, doctors are struggling to set up an effective care system. Faced with a massive influx of wounded – 50,000 in mid-December, according to the Ministry of Health in Gaza, managed by Hamas – the lack of beds or medicine makes the situation critical. And difficult to treat under the bombs. “I’m afraid that we will get used to it and find it normal to bomb hospitals,” worries Joël Weiler, general director of Médecins Du Monde during a press conference organized jointly by the NGOs this December 18, who assure that “25 of the 36 hospitals are destroyed”.
Without forgetting the unsanitary living conditions endured by the Gazan population. Like the family of Jehad Abu Hassan, Franco-Palestinian coordinator for Première Urgence Internationale, who was able to be evacuated to France at the beginning of November. Since France, he remains hanging on his phone in the hope of receiving regular news from his loved ones. He is particularly worried about his 73-year-old older sister, forced to live on the street in Khan Younès (south of the territory). “I don’t even dare ask how they eat or drink,” he whispers. There, obtaining food is almost impossible when you have to queue for up to six hours to obtain water or beans – with humanitarian aid remaining blocked outside the enclave – while taking the risk of dying under a bombing.
A lasting truce would therefore allow these actors on the ground to transport essential supplies (water, food, medicine) and treat all the injured and patients suffering from illness. “If the international community fails to establish a ceasefire, our universal values based on human rights no longer have any meaning,” concludes Jehad Abu Hassan.