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The Attacks Against Healthcare Workers

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Statement on the Attacks Against Healthcare Workers

The health sector has beared witness to recent blatant attacks on its medical and nursing staff, ranging from verbal threats to physical assaults that sometimes led to murders inside their workplace. Among the recent unfortunate examples of incidents were the blatant attack on the medical and nursing staff at Sheikh Ragheb Harb Hospital in Nabatiyeh, and the horrific murder of Dr. Elie Jaser in his clinic, a crime that shook the society in Lebanon. In light of the lawlessness that the country is experiencing, the medical and nursing bodies have become at the mercy of those who do not respect the sacrifices of health workers and their role in preserving what remains of this sector.

This comes in the midst of the emigration of an unprecedented number of doctors and nurses due to the worsening living conditions and the exacerbation of the stifling crisis, one which has weakened the health sector and increased the enormous pressure on its workers. In addition, it should be noted that the medical complications that some patients experience are often the result of the development of the disease, and not the inaction of the medical and nursing staff who are doing their best under the current circumstances.

Based on the foregoing, the Standing Committee on Human Rights and Peace in the Lebanese Medical Students’ International Committee (LeMSIC) condemns the continuous attacks on the healthcare workers, especially considering the humanitarian message carried by this body and its workers. Therefore, the committee calls on all concerned unions and syndicates to mobilize immediately to develop a plan with the relevant ministries in order to secure the necessary protection for workers in the health sector. The committee also calls on the Ministry of Public Health and the Ministry of Interior and Municipalities to coordinate and work at the governmental and administrative levels to support hospitals and clinics in order to put an end to these violations and punish the perpetrators. Finally, the committee expresses its full readiness to support workers in the health sector in their next steps that aim to secure their right to a safe workplace away from the infringements that afflict their mission.

Full solidarity,

Lebanese Medical Students’ International Committee (LeMSIC)