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20+ U.S. Medical Workers Trapped in Gaza, Face Severe Health Issues, After Israel Shuts Rafah Border

HeadlineMay 14, 2024

A new Human Rights Watch Report finds Israeli forces have attacked humanitarian aid convoys and buildings at least eight times since October 7 despite being given their coordinates, and without warning. This comes as U.N. Secretary-General António Guterres on Monday called for a full investigation after a U.N. aid worker was killed and another injured when their clearly marked vehicle was attacked in Rafah as they traveled to the European Hospital. More than 190 U.N. staff have been killed in Gaza since October 7.

Meanwhile, inside Rafah’s European Hospital, over 20 U.S. medical volunteers are now reportedly trapped and unable to return home after Israel sealed off the Rafah border crossing last week. Like many Gazans, the U.S. medical workers are now facing dehydration and other deadly health conditions. The Intercept’s Ryan Grim questioned State Department spokesperson Vedant Patel over the fate of the U.S. doctors.

Ryan Grim: “What does it say about conditions more generally in Rafah and in Khan Younis if American doctors, only arrived recently, are already suffering from dehydration and malnutrition?”

Vedant Patel: “So, look, we have not been unambiguous about the humanitarian situation in Gaza. It is a crisis. No amount of humanitarian aid at this moment is enough.”

The State Department spokesperson also criticized Israeli settlers who were seen in a video blocking a Jordanian aid convoy headed toward Gaza, throwing food into the road and setting fire to vehicles at the Tarqumiya checkpoint near Hebron in the occupied West Bank.

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