Powered by WebAds

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

UN 'Human Rights Council' falsely accuses Israel again

The UN 'Human Rights Council,' the august-sounding body that has been set up to criticize every step that Israel takes, has joined with the World Health Organization (WHO) and Physicians for Human Rights - Israel (PHR-I) to criticize Israel's provision of health care to 'Palestinian' residents of the Gaza Strip as 'inadequate.'

But leaving aside for a moment the fact that the 'Palestinian' leadership has chosen to purchase guns and explosives rather than building hospitals, leaving aside that Israel left the Gaza Strip in 2005 and no longer has responsibility for that area, leaving aside the fact that the 'Palestinians' have repeatedly bombed the Erez Crossing point through which sick 'Palestinians' must pass into Israel, and leaving aside the fact that the 'Palestinians' continued an unrelenting bombardment from Gaza into southern Israel until they agreed to take time off to regroup a few months ago, the accusation that Israel is not admitting 'Palestinians' from Gaza for medical treatment is false.
The data showed that patients receiving permits for referrals to hospitals in Israel - or the PA or Jordan - increased by 45 percent from 4,932 in 2006 to 7,176 in 2007, and continued to increase in the first six months of 2008.


Although there were fluctuations, the mean rates of permits per month in these three years were 411, 598, and 733 respectively. Table 1 shows that the approval rates among those applying were 90.2 percent in 2006, falling somewhat to 81.5 percent in 2007 and even more sharply to 66 percent in 2008. The substantial increase in approved permits more than offset the increase in percentage of refusals - from 18 to 34 percent. Throughout the entire period, a much smaller number of Gazans received approval for care in Egypt.
And for those who would argue that Israel is 'bad' because a smaller percentage of 'Palestinians' needing assistance is being admitted for treatment, it's important to look at why some 'Palestinians' are being denied care.
Since the Israeli disengagement from Gaza in the summer of 2005, Hamas and its allies have fired more than 6,000 rockets and mortars into Israel. The number of rocket attacks increased from November 2007 onward, targeting Sderot and other civilian areas. Palestinian terrorists fired some 200 mortar shells and Kassam rockets at the Erez crossing between Israel and Gaza, resulting in substantial damage and injuries to personnel.

During this period there were some 30 foiled attempts at terrorist infiltration, including at least 20 incidents where Palestinians used medical missions to attempt terror attacks. In June 2006, a female suicide terrorist was arrested at the Erez crossing while on her way to carry out an attack on an Israeli hospital. In May 2007, two female bombers received permits but were caught after slipping through security checks. On May 22, 2008, a truck loaded with 4.5 tons of explosives exploded just before reaching the crossing.

The ISA published reports on 11 individuals, including those just cited, who used permits for medical care or for family visits to patients already in Israel for the purpose of carrying out terror-related activities. At Erez, three patients admitted under questioning that they had purchased referral notes with bogus medical information from doctors in Gaza. According to the ISA, terror organizations were making a special effort to recruit women, including those who are pregnant, who are less likely to be closely examined and whose heavy clothing more readily conceals suspicious objects. PHR-I forwarded these patients for approval, unaware of their true status.


In 2008, WHO and PHR-I published a spreadsheet itemizing details on 32 Gazan patients whose deaths were attributed to delays in processing requests for medical care in Israel and refusals of permits during the period October 1, 2007 to March 1, 2008.9 These months were a peak period for rocket and mortar attacks on Israel, many specifically directed at the Erez crossing (a fact not cited in the WHO/PHR-I report). The report is based on interviews of the families of patients who applied for permits during this period and examinations of their medical records.

Ten of the 32 patients did not receive permits for security reasons. Three were denied permits at Rafah, the gateway from Gaza controlled by Egypt. In five cases, the delay was attributed to lack of available vacant beds - a severe problem in Israel's overburdened health care system. In one case, a patient reported by PHR-I as dead from lack of treatment was found to be alive in Gaza, and in other case, a patient reported as dying from cancer as a result of non-referral was actually treated in Israel and returned home before dying. One male, aged 21, was reported as having stomach cancer, and another was a 68-year-old female with liver cancer, conditions for which referral would do little to alter a dismal prognosis. Four infants under one year old and one child under the age of 5 were among those whose deaths were attributed to delays or non-receipt of permits.
Up to this point, the report is only referring to provision of care to 'Palestinians' in Gaza. But Israel spends millions of dollars each year providing medical care to 'Palestinians' from Judea and Samaria and to Arabs from other countries as well. Once again, the UN 'Human Rights Council' is telling a lie.

Read the whole thing.


Post a Comment

<< Home