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Turkiye set to receive 26 Gazan patients, says Health Minister

November 15, 2023 at 7:05 pm

Turkish Health Minister Fahrettin Koca (L) visits Palestinian children with cancer, who are transferred from Gaza to Cairo for further treatment at the ‘57357’ Children’s Cancer Hospital in Cairo, Egypt on November 15, 2023 [Burcu Çalık Göçümlü/Anadolu Agency]

A total of 26 Gazan patients, and their 13 attendants, who passed through the Rafah border crossing with Egypt, will be brought to Turkiye this evening, the Turkish Health Minister said Wednesday, Anadolu Agency reports.

Fahrettin Koca told reporters at the El Arish International Airport in Egypt that Ankara will transfer the patients, especially child patients with cancer, to Turkiye this Wednesday.

He said the patients sent to Turkiye from Gaza will be the first Gazans to travel from Egypt to another country for treatment.

Koca said appropriate patients’ passage through the Rafah Border Gate is ensured, as he underlined that there is a tripartite coordination team involving Egypt, Turkiye and Israel.

Our desire is to be able to deliver this aid to all Gazans and Palestinians who need treatment. For this reason, Turkiye is ready to provide all kinds of assistance

he said.

READ: First fuel delivery to UN in Gaza, Israel says hospitals cannot benefit

Noting that there are nearly 1,000 patients with cancer in Gaza, he said teams are trying to bring as many patients to Turkiye as possible by keeping communication strong.

Koca said

Turkiye sent nearly 660 tons of medicine, medical supplies and medical devices, 20 ambulances and eight field hospitals to Gaza in 10 planes and one ship

Last week, Koca held phone calls with his Israeli and Egyptian counterparts for the transfer of patients in the besieged Palestinian enclave through the Rafah border crossing.

A coordination team was thus formed, with contact persons from Turkiye, Egypt and Israel.

Turkiye has delivered tons of aid equipment, including medicines, medical devices, and ambulances for the people of Gaza, where the humanitarian situation is dire due to Israeli assault since the 7 October attacks by Hamas.

As the Israeli assault on the Gaza Strip entered its 40th day, at least 11,320 Palestinians have been killed, including over 7,800 women and children, and more than 29,200 others have been injured, according to the latest figures from Palestinian authorities.

Thousands of buildings, including hospitals, mosques, and churches have also been damaged or destroyed in Israel’s relentless air and ground attacks on the besieged enclave since last month.

The Israeli death toll, meanwhile, is around 1,200, according to official figures.

READ: Cancer patients evacuated from Gaza heading to Turkiye for treatment