MSF doctors killed in strike on Al-Awda hospital in northern Gaza

Médecins sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) is horrified by the killing of two MSF doctors, Dr Mahmoud Abu Nujaila and Dr Ahmad Al Sahar, and a third doctor working with Al Awda, Dr. Ziad Al-Tatari, following a strike on Al Awda Hospital, one of the last remaining functional hospitals in Northern Gaza. Our thoughts are with their families and all colleagues mourning their death.

Dr Abu Nujaila and Dr Al Sahar were in the facility when it was hit on the third and the fourth floors. Other medical staff, including MSF staff were also severely injured. MSF has regularly shared information about Al Awda as a functioning hospital and the presence of its staff in Al Awda to warring parties. GPS coordinates were also shared with Israeli authorities yesterday.

We condemn this strike in the strongest terms and yet again call for the respect and protection of medical facilities, staff and patients.

At time of writing, more than 200 patients are still in Al Awda and are unable to receive the level of care they need. These patients must be urgently and safely evacuated to other hospitals that are still functioning although all hospitals in Gaza have been working beyond their capacities since October due to ongoing shortages, attacks and extremely high caseload.

This is yet another incident that MSF staff have been subject to in the last few days. Our colleagues who are assisting hundreds of patients in Gaza are facing extremely difficult times in providing the little medical care they can. Seeing doctors killed next to hospital beds is beyond tragic, and this must stop now.

Attacks on medical facilities are a serious violation of International Humanitarian Law, and this has become systematic in the past weeks. We reiterate our call for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza, now more than ever, the lift of the siege, and the protection of medical facilities and medical staff.

MSF has been working in Al Awda since 2018, providing reconstructive surgeries for adults and trauma surgeries for children. We pay tribute to the courage of our colleagues, and we will always remember them.

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