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August 10, 2015 11:01 am

UNRWA’s Chris Gunness, Vile as Ever, Blames Israel for Hamas Medical Crimes

avatar by Elder of Ziyon

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Israel has been blamed for Hamas' medical crimes. Photo: Elder of Ziyon.

Israel has been blamed for Hamas’ medical crimes. Photo: Elder of Ziyon.

UNRWA’s spokesman Chris Gunness issued press release implicitly blaming Israel for a rise in Gaza’s infant mortality rate.

The infant mortality rate in Gaza has risen for the first time in five decades, according to an UNRWA study, and UNRWA’s Health Director says the blockade may be contributing to the trend.

Every five years, UNRWA conducts a survey of infant mortality across the region, and the 2013 results were released this week.

The number of babies dying before the age of one has consistently gone down over the last decades in Gaza, from 127 per 1,000 live births in 1960 to 20.2 in 2008. At the last count, in 2013, it had risen to 22.4 per 1,000 live births.

The rate of neonatal mortality, which is the number of babies that die before four weeks old, has also gone up significantly in Gaza, from 12 per 1,000 live births in 2008 to 20.3 in 2013.

“Infant mortality is one of the best indicators for the health of the community,” said Dr. Akihiro Seita, Director of UNRWA’s health program. “It reflects on the mother and child’s health and in the U.N. Millennium Development Goals it is one of the key indicators.”

“It is hard to know the exact causes behind the increase in both neonatal and infant mortality rates, but I fear it is part of a wider trend. We are very concerned about the impact of the long-term blockade on health facilities, supplies of medicines and bringing equipment in to Gaza,” Dr. Seita said.

Gunness, a former BBC reporter, knows quite well how to frame a story to get the audience to connect the dots in the way he wishes.

Here are the facts:

  • Israel does not limit medicine to Gaza.
  • Israel does not block any medical equipment to Gaza.
  • Gunness cannot point to a single Gaza child who died due to lack of medicine or equipment because of Israeli limits on items into Gaza.
And the facts about Hamas that Gunness does not want you to know:

All of these facts can contribute to Gaza’s infant mortality rate since UNRWA’s last survey. But you wouldn’t know any of them from Chris Gunness, who will never condemn Hamas if he can avoid it.

Chris Gunness is issuing anti-Israel propaganda – and covering up Hamas crimes.

So far the only news outlets I’ve seen that published this are IMEMC – which published it in Gunness’ name – and the Daily Star Lebanon

Interestingly, UNRWA does not include this in its own press release section.

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  • manley kiefer

    What a shame that the money spent in rockets, tunnels, vast fortunes to their leaders and other expenses to use against Israel isn’t used to improve conditions in their own Gaza instead of the warped fanatical desire to destroy the only true progressive democratic country in their midst and of blaming their international scapegoat, Israel.

  • zadimel

    Where are the other two responses?

  • Yale

    Several years ago, I attended a conference at which Gunness spoke. His speech announced an UNRWA initiative to rehabilitate Palestinian refugees by providing vocational training. During the Q & A, I asked why they had waited for nearly 60 years to do this. His answer was that rehabilitating the refugees wasn’t part of UNRWA’s mandate. When I posed a follow-up: Had the UNRWA mandate changed? He refused to answer and went on to the next questioner.

  • zadimel

    If the Hamas terrorist organization were to devote time,money and medical man(woman)power to improving the health of their “nation,” rather than attempting to annihilate the Jewish State, they would be in a far better position to deal with their state of health. Indeed, Israeli medical systems have treated (in the Jewish Nation) the daughter, granddaughter and mother-in-law of the head of Hamas. Even the wife of the PA chairman was treated in an Israeli hospital. If Hitler’s family needed to be medically treated in England in 1944, I wonder how that would have gone over in the Allied nations?

  • Rhona Charney

    Incompetence, low self esteem, lack of knowledge and immaturity are some of the traits of people who need to blame others for their own shortcomings. Two year olds hold everyone else responsible. Chris Gunness, take note. What is your hidden agenda? Why can’t you and your ilk straighten your limp spines and be honest? I’m so sick of this deliberate skewed kind of reporting to avoid placing responsibility where it belongs.

  • Grace

    the rate aint higher yet, it will go higher and higher, until all men will look up to the God of the Hebrews. it is no joke. soon and very soon, the world will wonder at the wondrous works of the God of the Jews.

    • Bryna Weiss

      oh, stop your ultra-religious babblings!

  • nelson marans

    The usual UNRWA-Hamas alliance that would be expected. We support partly the 13,000 UNRWA workers in Gaza, most of them Hamas operators. It is about time that UNRWA is dissolved as a major amount of its funds support terror and anti-Israel propaganda.