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You are here News Human Rights Trapped in Rafah, U.S. medical volunteers say they can't save lives and can't evacuate

Trapped in Rafah, U.S. medical volunteers say they can't save lives and can't evacuate

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US med volunteers trapped in GazaWhen Zain Abu Obeid died on Sunday at the last functioning hospital in Rafah, there was no one to collect the 7-year-old boy's body from the morgue. He had been injured in an Israeli airstrike that killed his entire family, according to members of a U.S. medical team trapped at the European Hospital following Israel's closure of the nearby border crossing.

Conditions are so dire that the hospital staff are operating without light due to fuel shortages.

"You can see how everything is dark. The only light is coming from outside," Dr. Ammar Ghanem, vice chair of the Syrian American Medical Society, said in a video that he filmed on Monday and sent to NPR. The video showed doctors and nurses in the intensive care unit working in what little daylight was coming through the small windows.

Israel seized the Rafah crossing with Egypt last week as part of an assault on the nearby city of the same name, aimed at rooting out Hamas militants after a Hamas attack last October killed almost 1,200 Israeli civilians and security forces, according to Israeli government figures. Gaza's health ministry says more than 35,000 Palestinians, most of them women and children, have been killed in seven months of war.

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