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WHO condemns attacks on multiple health facilities in Benghazi, Libya

The World Health Organization condemns recent attacks on two health facilities in Benghazi. Libya. On 21 June, a rocket hit the roof of the Ear, Nose and Throat and Urological Center, directly above the operating theaters, causing damage to the roof, all oxygen supply pipes, and the central ventilation. The roof had been reconstructed in 2014 following damages sustained during the 2011 conflict in Libya. The centre has a capacity for 300 in-patients, and more than 470 people were in the center at the time of the attack. Due to damages as a result of the attack, the operating theaters are now non-functional, and patients have been relocated to nearby health facilities. 

On 22 June, the administration building of Benghazi Medical Center was extensively damaged when a car exploded in the north parking area. No casualties were reported. Just three weeks ago, the Benghazi Medical Centre had sustained extensive damage to its infrastructure following multiple attacks. The center, which has 1100 beds, serves a population of half a million people in Benghazi and is the only facility offering tertiary health care services in Benghazi. 

These attacks violate international humanitarian law, representing a serious setback for the affected community and an additional challenge to humanitarian work in Libya. It is estimated that nearly 60% of public hospitals in conflict areas in Libya have shut down or are inaccessible.

Such attacks on health facilities in Libya are not only continuing but also increasing in both frequency and scale. This is unacceptable. WHO once again urges all parties in the conflict to respect the safety and neutrality of health workers and health facilities. 

Distributed by APO on behalf of World Health Organization (WHO).