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Gaza: Palestinian woman gives birth to quadruplets prematurely

December 27, 2023 at 12:18 pm

Palestinian Iman Al-Masri, who leaves her home in Beit Hanoun to escape from Israeli bombardment, is seen with her quadruplets, one of them is still being treated in the hospital, as Al-Masri family takes shelter at a school in Deir al-Balah, Gaza on December 26, 2023. [Ashraf Amra – Anadolu Agency]

A young Palestinian woman has given birth prematurely to quadruplets in the besieged and heavily bombarded city of Deir Al-Balah in Gaza.

Iman Al-Masry gave birth early after suffering increased stress while in a displacement camp, after she was forced from her home by Israel’s relentless bombing campaign. She has also struggled to find sufficient food and water, putting the health of her unborn babies at risk.

Iman went into labour at eight months, undergoing an emergency caesarean section. Three of the babies were able to return to the shelter with her but the fourth remains in a neonatal unit.

On Monday, the Palestinian Ministry of Health in the Gaza Strip said in a statement that 50,000 pregnant women currently live in displacement centres without food or health care, and about 180 others give birth every day in unsafe and inhumane conditions.

On 17 December, the United Nations Population Fund said in a statement that “thousands of pregnant and lactating women in Gaza face the risk of death,” warning that “the severe food shortage in Gaza exposes pregnant and breastfeeding women to the risk of anaemia, preeclampsia, bleeding, and even death.”

Read: UNRWA struggles to provide care for 50,000 pregnant women in Gaza amid Israeli attacks