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AP PHOTOS: Babies born prematurely in Gaza have been evacuated to Egypt


ByThe Associated Press

November 20, 2023, 3:02 PM

A nurse prepares premature babies for transport to Egypt after they were evacuated from Shifa Hospital in Gaza City to a hospital in Rafah, Gaza Strip, Monday, Nov. 20, 2023. (AP Photo/Fatima Shbair)

The Associated Press

Twenty-eight babies who were born prematurely in Gaza City’s besieged Shifa Hospital have been transported to Egypt, where their parents and healthcare workers hope they can receive the treatment they need to grow.

As they waited to be evacuated to Egypt via the crossing at Rafah on Monday, the premature babies were cared for at a hospital in the border city.

So tiny, four of the premature infants fit into a crib with room to spare. Their identification cuffs hung loose around their ankles, emphasizing their little limbs. Too fragile to be exposed to their families at large, the babies were bottle-fed by medics and nurses.

At last, the opportunity for them to leave arrived and Palestine Red Crescent Society volunteers transported the babies through the hospital — four tiny children lined up on a stretcher.

The World Health Organization organized the evacuation of 31 babies from Shifa on Sunday. Three were transferred to the Emirates Hospital in Rafah, and are in good health, according to the Palestine Red Crescent Society. Israel’s army stormed Shifa days ago, saying it had evidence that Hamas militants built a command post beneath the hospital, an allegation that hospital staff and Hamas deny.

The hospital ran out of supplies and fuel to run its last generator more than a week ago. The Gaza Health Ministry says more than 250 critically ill or wounded patients remain stranded at the compound.



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