Gaza’s ambulance crews dodge airstrikes to save lives.
Daily they risk their lives amid the horror of airstrikes to help those they can and bring back the bodies of those they cannot.
1. Despite being focused on only humanitarian work and not holding any political affiliation, sometimes the Palestinian emergency responders are hit by Israeli attacks. Seen here is a row of destroyed ambulances that have been targeted in the past are seen on top of the headquarters of Gaza’s Red Crescent headquarters in Gaza City on July 11,2014. (Heidi Levine for The National)
2. July 11: “Braving the threat of air strikes and shelling, [medics have] ferried scores of wounded men, women and children — and presumably fighters — to hospital from the wreckage of bombed-out Gaza homes.” (Heidi Levine for The National)
3. Khalil Abou Foul, the Red Crescent’s director of disaster management in Gaza, said he was concerned about the safety of his 120 full-time emergency medical technicians and 250 volunteers. (Heidi Levine for The National)
4. Despite coordinating with the Israelis, providing them names, IDs, vehicle-number plates, he said his personnel are at great risk. ‘There is no respect for ambulance workers on the Israeli side,’ Mr Abou Foul said. (Heidi Levine for The National)
5. One of the three ambulance hit in Jabiliya Gaza on 9 July. The ICRC deplores outright the casualties and the damage caused at the Palestine Red Crescent branch in Jabaliya. A dozen staff and volunteers were wounded and three ambulances destroyed. © PRCS
6. A Palestinian Red Crescent Society paramedic injured at the jabalyia station, along with other staff and volunteers, receives medical attention in hospital in Gaza. © PRCS
7. The United Nations said that two hospitals, four clinics, one treatment centre, and four ambulances have sustained damage in Israeli air strikes. One doctor has also been killed and 19 medical staff injured. July 15, 2014(Wissam Nassar/Al Jazeera)
8. 9 EMTs were slightly injured, 3 more suffered fractures and bruising and were taken to Al Quds hospital in Gaza City. The station suffered damage and three ambulances were destroyed. All remaining ambulances and staff have been transferred to the station in Gaza City, leaving Jabalia with reduced emergency cover.© PRCS
9. Ambulance crews take a break from their hectic day to break their fast during the Islamic holy month of Ramadan. (Heidi Levine for The National)
10. ‘Sometimes you think this could be the end of your life. But you have to do this because there is no one else who will,’ EMT Ayman Shahwan said. Another EMT,39-year-old Ra’aid Shaheen talks about how the 20 to 30 trips a day can be dangerous. He recalls once when he “had finished dropping off a victim and was driving past a police station while on our way back to our station. Rockets started raining down on the police and the shock wave tossed our car like a toy.”Another call haunts him, too."We heard two kids selling ice cream were hit in Al Shajaya neighborhood," he says. "The only thing we could do for them was to collect the pieces of their bodies." (PhotoHeidi Levine/ The National)