Church officials say Gazans urgently need humanitarian corridor

VATICAN CITY (CNS) — Gazans are in need of urgent medical care and a humanitarian corridor, Catholic Church officials told Vatican Radio. “Many have lost hands or legs and need immediate care. Their situation is very difficult: They cannot go to Israel, to Egypt or to Jordan and they can’t even leave their homes,” Claudette Habesch, secretary-general of Caritas Jerusalem, told Vatican Radio Dec. 29. Caritas Jerusalem is the local affiliate of the Catholic umbrella group of aid agencies, Caritas Internationalis. “The situation in Gaza is dramatic. Bombs are continually falling and now more than 1,500 people have been injured and need medical care, but in Gaza there are only 1,400 hospital beds,” she said. Israeli warplanes began pounding targets in Gaza Dec. 27, striking ministries and facilities of Hamas, the Palestinian paramilitary organization that runs the Gaza Strip. More than 200 people have been reported dead. Asked what the international community could do, Archbishop Antonio Franco, Vatican nuncio to Israel and the Palestinian territories, said it should act to guarantee a humanitarian corridor “to reach the victims, who are those suffering the consequences of these attacks.”

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