Israeli security forces have attacked unarmed Palestinians while they were praying in one of Islam’s holiest mosques in Jerusalem during the last few nights of Ramadan. There were reports that security forces then prevented paramedics from reaching protesters who were injured, and that Israeli security forces stormed a medical clinic treating the injured with stun grenades, causing further harm to patients and healthcare workers, and damaging medical equipment. It is a war crime to attack unarmed civilians in a place of worship or within medical clinics. 

As nurses, we are outraged that our colleagues in other countries are being attacked for doing their jobs by caring for their patients.

Plans to forcibly dispossess families in East Jerusalem are part and parcel of Israel’s attempt to alter the demographic balance of the city, by ethnically cleansing Palestinians, while simultaneously providing financial and political support for illegal Jewish-only settlements built on stolen Palestinian land. Again, nurses know that this puts people’s lives and health at risk; access to a stable home is a right and is essential to protect people’s health.

Nurses United’s Nurses of Colour network (NOC) wants a world where everyone is treated equally, and for everyone to have the right to medical treatment with healthcare workers able to carry out their duties without being harmed. As fellow nurses, we can only imagine how heart wrenching it must be to not be allowed to care for your patients, and for their health to be put at risk by being forced out of their homes because of their ethnicity.

The UK government must take immediate action and stop allowing Israel to act with impunity. It must demand  an end to current proceedings to evict these families, and start holding Israel accountable for its actions which contribute to the crime of apartheid. This includes through implementing sanctions, and banning the import of goods from Israel’s illegal settlements.

NOC will be joining the rally on Saturday 15th May at 12pm outside Marble Arch in London in solidarity with our colleagues in Palestine, because we know the health risks if these attacks are allowed to continue.

Please email the foreign office using the link below:

#SaveSheikhJarrah #FreePalestine

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