Middle East

Growing number of infants in Gaza are on the “brink of death” due to lack of food, WHO warns

From CNN’s Ibrahim Dahman

The World Health Organization issued another stark warning about the deteriorating humanitarian situation in Gaza and a spokesperson on Tuesday said a growing number of infants there are on the “brink of death” from acute hunger.

“What doctors and medical staff are telling us is, more and more, they are seeing the effects of starvation; they’re seeing newborn babies simply dying because they (have) too low birth weight,” WHO spokesperson Dr. Margaret Harris said.

While young children and infants are among the least able to cope with chronic hunger, the WHO says there is a rising number of dangerously underweight pregnant women, as well.

“This is entirely man-made, everything we’re seeing medically; this was a territory where the health system functioned well,” Harris said.

The WHO was aiming to build emergency malnutrition stabilization centers in Gaza, but progress had been hampered by a lack of security.

One center had been established in southern Gaza, and the WHO is attempting to establish one in northern Gaza, “but we can’t bring them in at the scale and to the people without the access and the safety. So there is no answer until there’s a ceasefire,” Harris said.

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