On Friday 1 June, volunteer medic Razan al-Najjar was shot in Gaza.
Razan, 21, had returned to volunteer at the demonstrations every week, despite being shot in the foot with a rubber bullet on one occasion and being directly hit in the chest with a gas canister on another. Her courage in the face of such violence and her dedication to assisting others are truly to be admired.
Christian Aid’s thoughts and sympathies are with Razan’s family at this terrible time.
In response to the horrific killing of Razan al-Najjar, Christian Aid's Head of Middle East Policy, William Bell, said:
'Christian Aid is deeply saddened by the senseless and unjust killing on Friday of volunteer medic Razan al-Najjar, from our partner organisation the Palestinian Medical Relief Society (PMRS). Razan was shot by Israeli Forces as she provided vital medical assistance to injured protesters in Gaza.
'Over the last two months, Palestinians have been protesting in support of their right to return to their ancestral homes and to end the nearly 12-year closure of Gaza. Since the beginning of these protests, PMRS, with Christian Aid’s support, has provided lifesaving assistance to thousands of victims throughout the Gaza strip.
As Dr Aed Yaghi from the Palestinian Medical Relief Society commented:
We are mourning this terrible loss and demand that Israel is held accountable for its crimes under International Humanitarian Law. Three of our volunteers were also targeted on Friday and 30 of our paramedics have been injured over the last two months.
'Until the international community acts as a genuine impartial arbiter in this decades-long conflict, then more innocent civilians will lose their lives and peace will be out of reach. International law and accountability are critical parts of that process.
'Christian Aid echoes the joint statement issued on Friday by organisations working to support the rights of Palestinian people: "At least 112 Palestinians have been killed in the protests and over 13,000 injured since 30 March. This terrible loss highlights the misjudgement of the UK Government’s decision not to support a UN Commission of Inquiry to assess violations of international law in Gaza."
'Christian Aid is urging the UK Government to call on Israel to bring the closure of Gaza and the occupation permanently to an end, to finally realise the rights of Palestinian people to live in freedom and dignity.'
Christian Aid has been partnering with the Palestinian Medical Relief Society (PMRS) since 1983. Find out more about the lifesaving work of PMRS
Alongside PMRS, Christian Aid's partner the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights is documenting human rights violations and the Culture and Free Thought Association is providing much needed psychosocial support to children and families affected by this violence.
Find out more about the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights
Find out more about the Culture and Free Thought Association