The head of the World Health Organization (WHO) on Monday challenged an Israeli army order to empty a medical supplies warehouse in the southern Gaza Strip within 24 hours. The Jewish state denies this.
The Israeli army denied on Tuesday that it had asked the World Health Organization (WHO) to empty a medical supplies warehouse in the southern Gaza Strip within 24 hours, as its leader had claimed.
“Today WHO received notification from the Israeli Defense Forces to remove our supplies from our medical camp in the southern Gaza Strip within 24 hours as ground operations would render it unusable,” WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus announced on the social network X (formerly Twitter ).
“We call on Israel to withdraw this order and take all possible measures to protect civilians and civilian infrastructure, including hospitals and humanitarian facilities,” he added.
Tensions between Israel and the United Nations
The Israeli Defense Agency, which monitors civilian activities in the Palestinian territories (Cogat), responded to that tweet with another.
“The truth is that we did not ask for the warehouses to be evacuated and we communicated this clearly and in writing to the relevant UN officials. We expect a UN official to be at least correct (in his remarks),” the (Cogat) explained.
This episode came as Israel informed the United Nations in recent days that it would not renew the visa of the humanitarian coordinator for the Palestinian territories, Canadian Lynn Hastings, who was accused by the Israeli authorities of not being “impartial.” would.
The Israeli army increased its grip on the south of the Gaza Strip, where dozens of tanks entered Monday as part of its offensive against the Palestinian Hamas, making the situation even more dangerous for the population trapped by bombings.
During a press conference in Cairo, Ahmed Al-Mandhari, director of the WHO Regional Office for the Eastern Mediterranean, assured that “WHO is seriously concerned about the resumption of hostilities, including intensive bombing in Gaza.”
The Hamas-run health ministry in Gaza says the Israeli-led campaign has killed nearly 16,000 people following the Palestinian Islamist movement’s attack on Israeli soil on October 7.
According to Israel, on October 7, 1,200 people, mostly civilians, were killed by Hamas and around 240 people were kidnapped and taken to the small Palestinian territory.
The United States, Israel’s main ally, has asked it to do more to avoid civilian casualties as operations shift south, where many Gazans have sought refuge after fleeing the devastated north.
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