Gaza: MSF denounces Israeli attack on displacement camp in Rafah

On the night of 26 May, 180 wounded and 28 dead were recorded at the Trauma Stabilization Point (TSP) we support in Tal al Sultan, Gaza, after airstrikes by Israeli forces hit a camp sheltering displaced people, in a designate safe zone by Israel. Most of the patients we treated had shrapnel wounds, fractures, traumatic injuries and burns.  

Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) strongly denounces this bloody attack that comes just a few days after the International Court of Justice (ICJ) ordered Israel to halt all military operations in Rafah. We reiterate our urgent call for an immediate and sustained ceasefire. 

While Israeli forces described this attack as precise with some civilians injured, the number of casualties resulting from these airstrikes shows otherwise. 

“Women and children were among the people that were brought to the stabilization point, and once again, civilians are paying the price of this war. This Israeli attack on a populated camp in a so-called “safe zone” in Rafah shows the complete disregard for the lives of civilians in Gaza”, says Samuel Johann, MSF emergency coordinator in Gaza.  

"Though all the patients were stabilized and referred to field hospitals in Rafah, no single health care facility in Gaza can handle a mass casualty event such as this one. The health system has been decimated and cannot cope any longer," concludes Johann. 

We are shocked by the continuous attack on civilians, and we have no more words to describe the horror of what we see here in Gaza. This has to stop. A lot of these cases had critical, complex injuries that require advanced medical care which is not available in Gaza. Then, with the border closed we are not able to evacuate those patients. Since we open, we received already over 500 cases. There has been intense bombing over Rafah on 26 May and one airstrike on an IDP camp 1.5 km from this health facility. And in a matter of minutes, we received 28 dead, and around 180 wounded.  ----- Gaia Giletta, MSF Nurse Activity Manager in Gaza