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Palestinians: Coronavirus

Department for International Development written question – answered on 5th May 2020.

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Photo of David Jones David Jones Conservative, Clwyd West

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what support her Department is providing to the Palestinian Authority to tackle the covid-19 pandemic in the Occupied Palestinian Territories.

Photo of James Murray James Murray Opposition Whip (Commons)

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what assessment she has made of the effect of Israel’s blockade of Gaza on Gaza’s capacity to respond to the covid-19 outbreak.

Photo of James Cleverly James Cleverly Minister of State (Foreign and Commonwealth Office) (Joint with the Department for International Development)

The UK has pledged £744 million to support the global humanitarian response to COVID-19. We have delivered additional vital support in the Occupied Palestinian Territories by providing funding to WHO and UNICEF to purchase and co-ordinate the delivery of medical equipment, treat critical care patients, train frontline public health personnel and scale up laboratory testing capacity.

The UN assesses that although the current number of detected cases remains relatively low, the capacity of the Palestinian health system to cope with an expected increase in COVID-19 cases is poor. The situation is particularly severe in Gaza, where the health system has shortages in specialised staff, drugs and equipment. We continue to monitor the situation and are working closely with the UN and the international community to ensure a co-ordinated response.

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