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MSF surgeon recounts Israel's phosphorus bomb attacks on civilians in Gaza

The file photo shows a Palestinian man being treated for burns at Nasser Hospital in Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip, on Sunday, January 11, 2009. The hospital's chief doctor said the injuries might have been caused by munitions containing white phosphorus.

A British-Palestinian doctor working with Doctors Without Borders (MSF) in the besieged Gaza Strip says he has treated patients with white phosphorus burns, warning of the dire situation of the territory's hospitals.

"I've seen white phosphorus burns when I worked in Gaza during the 2009 war and I know and recognize its distinctive burn pattern. And we have treated some cases in Shifa Hospital, one of whom was a 13-year-old boy with the distinctive phosphorus burns," the MSF surgeon, Ghassan Abu Sittah, said.

"These [white phosphorus] burns ... continue to penetrate deep into the tissues of the body because it's a chemical burn, it's not a thermal burn and they have a very distinct pattern of injury," the Palestinian doctor said.

He then commented on the situation of the hospitals in Gaza amid an ongoing Israeli offensive and blockade.

"Forty percent of the hospitals have been destroyed and are out of service. Sixteen hospitals have been targeted, and over the last few days, the Israelis have adopted a new policy in which they are targeting the entrances of hospitals in order to render them too dangerous for people to use," he explained.

Abu Sittah added that there is a lack of space in hospitals to treat patients due to damaged and destroyed infrastructure.

"The biggest problem we face now is [that] due to the delays in getting people to the operating room -- because there are more wounded than there is capacity in operation rooms in Gaza -- we are now noticing that most of the patients that come to us come delayed and therefore come infected," he explained.

Israel is accused of using white phosphorus munitions in military operations in Gaza and Lebanon, including the use of artillery-fired white phosphorus over Gaza City and rural locations along Lebanon's southern border.

The regime waged a bloody war on the blockaded territory on October 7 after the Gaza-based Palestinian resistance groups launched Operation al-Aqsa Storm against the occupying entity.

The death toll from Israel’s genocidal attacks has exceeded 9,700, while more than 26,000 people, mostly women, children and the elderly, have been wounded.

It has also imposed a complete siege on the coastal territory, cutting off fuel, electricity, food, medicines, and water to more than two million Palestinians living there.

(Source: Ruptly)

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