QUARANTINE - DAY 23 - 28th March 2020
There are nine cases now in Gaza. This virus will have a devastating effect on Gaza - a strip that is around 362 sq km with over two million inhabitants. A recent study showed that by 2020, this "open air prison" would be uninhabitable. It now is. Limited electricity. No clean water. Under-equipped hospitals. If the rest of the world is struggling to cope with this virus, what will happen here? Gaza has some 50-60 ventilators and an extremely limited number of intensive care beds. The Ministry of Health in Gaza has called on the international community to urge Israel to remove the blockade amid a serious shortage of the essentials needed to combat this virus..
Today a photographer in Aida refugee camp, Bethlehem, describes life there:
It is day 23 of Corona in Bethlehem. As in any country in the world, we are now living in the same state of complete disruption of life. All roads are closed, there are no people in the streets, everyone is in their houses, life is almost non-existent here, everyone is committed to the quarantine, but it is necessary to go out for a little time so that we can breathe some air in the camp. But this does not mean that there is life in the streets. It is more like a living cemetery - people are outside some of the time, but then they return from where they came - wandering out of their homes for a brief moment, and then going back inside. Everyone is afraid of this situation - the virus and the interruption of their work. I do not know what to say, but I hope that this disease will end in peace. Everyone here is trying to provide assistance in whatever way they can, because this disease has caused many financial and moral crises. Many people in the camp can no longer work and are struggling to feed their families. Many are now dependent on aid and the emergency committees that have been set up since quarantine began.
I live in Aida camp. I live alone in a separate house. I pay my rent every month. I used to travel frequently to visit family in Jordan, but I don't know when I will be able to return there. It is very difficult. What am I to do these days, since there is no work to go to? I am a photographer, so I go out to take some pictures in the camp whenever I can, to show everyday life in it, as well as everyone in their homes. The people of the camp are very worried about this difficult situation. Everyone is afraid. Everyone is sitting in their homes waiting to be released, because no one is working. It is hard for me now as a photographer, because I must wear fully protective clothing and my movements are restricted. Everyone is spending their time at home waiting....