Humanity & Inclusion office in Gaza destroyed
Humanity & Inclusion’s office located in Rimal neighborhood in Gaza City, has been destroyed in a bombing strike on January 31, 2024
HI field team members in Gaza | © HI
The building is completely destroyed. No HI staff were present, but we do not have information about potential other victims in the surrounding areas. No alert or warning was given to HI, even though the coordinates of the building were duly communicated to the notification system put in place by the United Nations and Israeli forces to avoid the inadvertent targeting of humanitarian premises.
The priority of our organization is to ensure the safety and well-being of our staff and volunteers in Gaza, as well as to assist civilians affected by the conflict.
"We strongly condemn the destruction of the HI building used by our field teams in Gaza. For over 100 days, aid workers and volunteers have been lending a helping hand to the Palestinian population and playing a vital role in their survival. Our government has already taken a stand in favor of a ceasefire, but must do more to exert its influence so that civilians, humanitarian and medical personnel and infrastructure are no longer targeted in this conflict, which has already claimed too many victims and caused too much material damage." - Anne Delorme, Executive Director, Humanity & Inclusion Canada.
Since October 7, at least 26 751 Palestinians in Gaza have been killed and some 65 636 injured by the ongoing bombardment by Israeli forces. The Israeli retaliation follows the Hamas attacks on October 7 that killed 1 200 Israelis and took 240 Israelis and foreigners’ hostage.
We are calling on the parties to the conflict to respect international humanitarian law. They must ensure the protection of civilians and civilian infrastructure. They must ensure the rapid and unimpeded delivery of humanitarian aid. Medical and humanitarian personnel and their infrastructures must be protected.
“We are deeply concerned about the pattern of the past months of destroying civilian buildings where NGOs have their offices, schools or civilian’s houses. It is again the demonstration that nowhere in Gaza is safe. This must stop, and an immediate, long-lasting ceasefire is the only solution" - Federico Dessi, HI Regional Director in Middle East.
Canada has joined the call for a humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza and financially supports Humanity & Inclusion Canada in its response to the humanitarian situation in the region. Given the intensity of the conflict and the scale of the humanitarian consequences, we call on Canada to exercise its influence on the international community for the implementation of an immediate ceasefire and to ensure the lasting protection of civilians and humanitarian workers.
HI firmly and loudly asks to stop the use of explosive weapons in Gaza, as they have a systematic indiscriminate impact on civilians and threatens access to essential services for hundreds of thousands of people, including shelter, water, electricity, and humanitarian assistance. It also impedes the ability of humanitarian aid agencies to respond adequately and quickly to the vast and growing needs of civilians.
Humanity & Inclusion Canada (formerly Handicap International) is an international solidarity organization that works to ensure that people with disabilities and populations affected by crises, conflicts and disasters are never left behind. In Palestine since 1996, Humanity & Inclusion staff and volunteers currently work in more than 100 shelters for displaced people. Eight HI distribution trucks were able to enter the Gaza Strip during the winter holidays. Our teams distribute wheelchairs and other mobility aids, as well as hygiene, dignity and first aid kits. In addition, Humanity & Inclusion teams provide emergency rehabilitation, mental health support and psychosocial services, including recreational activities for more than 30 000 children in shelters. Finally, we offer education sessions to reduce the risk of explosive devices.