dinsdag 12 januari 2010

Israel en PA kunnen best samenwerken

Er zijn natuurlijk talloze voorbeelden te geven waar Palestijnen en Joden samenwerken. Als je alle organisaties bekijkt die werken aan bevordering van onderlinge verstandhoudingen kun je een aardig eind komen.
Maar naast die organisaties van vrijwilligers (helaas behoren daar maar weinig NGO`s bij, want die zijn meestal behoorlijk eenzijdig bezig) zijn er ook (semi)officiele instanties die hulp van Israel aan Palestijnen van de Westbank of Gaza bieden.
Zo worden er zieken uit Gaza in Israel geholpen wanneer er in Gaza geen mogelijkheden zijn deze mensen goed te behandelen.
Weliswaar probeert Hamas dat tegen te houden door een organisatie, die dat regelt en van Fatah is, over te nemen en dan meteen de hulp af te snijden om vervolgens luid te roepen dat de patienten Israel niet meer in mogen, maar desondanks bestaat een overgroot deel van de patienten in onder andere het Hadassa ziekenhuis in Jerusalem uit Palestijnen van buiten Israel. Afgelopen jaar betrof dit 20.000 Palestijnen! Ook Palestijnse artsen hebben volop mogelijkheid zich bij te scholen in Israel totdat er vanuit Palestijnse kant weer een verbod komt om van die mogelijkheid gebruik te maken.
De Israel Medical Association geeft jaarlijks aan hoeveel Palestijnen waar en waaraan geholpen zijn in Israel.
 
Het blijkt nu dat ook de afdeling van het Rode Kruis in de PA en de afdeling in Israel warme banden onderhouden, die verder zijn uitgegroeid nadat beide organisaties zich in 2006 hebben mogen aansluiten bij de wereldorganisatie van het Rode Kruis.
Dit heeft er bij voorbeeld toe geleid dat in 2009   3000 Palestijnen, zowel in acute als niet acute situaties van Palestijnse ambulances naar Israelische ambulances zijn gebracht en in Israel behandeld werden.
Het feit dat critici nog steeds roepen dat patienten onderweg overlijden door oponthoud is meer een aanwijzing voor Israelbashen dan een oorzaak van slechte verstandhouding. Deze patienten hadden uberhaupt niet vervoerd moeten worden  zonder goed overleg omdat ze daarvoor te ziek waren volgens de Israelische deskundige Bassa. 
De heer Al Hadid van het Jordaanse Rode Kruis zag het negen jaar geleden al voor zich: een coordinatie van Jordanie, Israel, de PA, Turkije, Saudi-Arabie en andere landen in geval van aardbevingen. Hiermee bevorder je pas echt vrede net zo als met de nu bestaande mogelijkheid dat Jordaanse studenten aan Israelische universiteiten studeren.
 
MS
 
 
Jerusalem Post

Relations warm between MDA and PA Red Crescent

 
The official recognition in 2006 by the International Committee of the Red Cross of Magen David Adom as Israel's national aid society - and of MDA and the Palestinian Red Crescent Society as members of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies - has warmed up relations and cooperation between the two societies.
 
At a Mideast Press Club meeting sponsored by The Media Line at the American Colony Hotel in eastern Jerusalem on Sunday, top representatives of MDA, Jordan's Red Crescent and the Palestinian Authority's Health Ministry said that the transfers of seriously ill Palestinians to hospitals in Israel, including eastern Jerusalem, has greatly improved. The Palestinians, however, said much more needs to be done.
 
 
Jordan's Red Crescent Society president Dr. Mohammed al-Hadid was specially invited to Israel for the press club meeting and to be a guest speaker at an international conference on emergency medicine to open on Monday at the Tel Aviv Hilton.

Also at the press club meeting was Dr. Qasem Maani, head of the international cooperation unit of the PA Health Ministry.

Representing MDA was Yoni Yagodovsky, director of its international department, who began his career in the first-aid and ambulance service as a Jerusalem teenager treating the ill, delivering babies and resuscitating the injured.

The press conference - attended by Israeli, Palestinian and foreign journalists - was organized by Felice Friedson, president and CEO of The Media Line news agency, and her husband, Michael, who is its executive editor. She announced that for the first time, Knesset Speaker MK Reuven Rivlin has invited Palestinian journalists on a tour of Israel's parliament, to see how democracy works there.

Also present at the session was Dalia Bassa, the Civil Administration of Judea and Samaria's long-time coordinator of health issues who works daily to arrange for the passage of Palestinians to Israel for urgent treatment, even without prior approval. She said that in 2009, she and colleagues facilitated the transfer of 3,000 emergency and non-emergency cases from Palestinian Red Crescent ambulances to MDA vehicles for treatment in Israel.

When a Ramallah journalist claimed that "many" died during the transfer, Bassa said that those in critical condition should not have been taken by ambulance "without coordination," as it was known they could not survive such a move.

Hadid, Yagodovsky and Maani all agreed that politics was best forgotten when working to save lives. Hadid noted that while Jordan and Israel signed a peace treaty in 1994, "to really have peace, it is up to people to make it work."

Nine years ago, he visited Jerusalem as a guest of the Foreign Ministry and suggested to MDA that an international conference on coping with major earthquakes should unite "Jordan, Israel, Palestine, Turkey, Saudi Arabia and other countries," as the region is prone to earthquakes. "We can exchange our expertise in this area," he said, recalling that when he returned home in his car, he felt as if someone had hit the vehicle from behind. In fact, an earthquake had shaken it. "This made me more determined that something should happen."

Then in November 2005, MDA and its Palestinian counterpart signed a memorandum of understanding on how the societies would work together to alleviate human suffering. "We hope that next month there will be an international conference on earthquakes in Amman in which Israelis and Palestinians will participate, along with representatives of the US, Norway and other countries," he said.

Hadid concluded: "There are good people and some bad ones. But you must not let the bad minority in every religion and country make us hostages of what they believe in. We used to [wonder] what Jews and Israelis look like, as if they came from outer space.

"Now, with the media and Internet, we know. We are all the same and should make the world a better place... People who don't want us to live in peace focus on differences."

For the first time, 15 Jordanians are studying for their bachelor's degrees in paramedics at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev in Beersheba. They could have gone to Australia or the US for this, Hadid said, but a high-level curriculum was found much closer to home.

Yagodovsky recalled that soon after he first joined an ambulance team in the capital, he helped treat terror attack victims. "MDA treats people who call us for help - Jews, Arabs and tourists. My best experiences were the first time I was able to resuscitate an elderly lady who lost consciousness and the time I delivered the baby of a woman in Jerusalem's Old City.

"Today, other countries ask us for training and assistance after disasters to learn from our experience," he said.

The MDA official added that "many obstacles have been removed in the last 10 years. There are security problems, but there are five Red Crescent ambulances and 25 team members allowed to enter Jerusalem to bring Palestinian patients to east Jerusalem hospitals. There are now direct communications between the dispatching centers. It used to be much more difficult."

Maani, who lives in Nablus, said that the PA Health Ministry has had to "face continuous and rapid changes in Palestinian society, demography, illness, priorities and resources. We must reply quickly to these changes We are Palestinians under occupation, and have to think how to develop our health system, improve services and build our infrastructure under these circumstances."

While the PA has 24 government hospitals and more than 450 primary care clinics, patients are sometimes not suited for treatment there and have to be transferred to eastern Jerusalem hospitals; last year, about 20,000 such transfers were made.

Maani insisted that there were difficulties moving critically ill patients from a Palestinian Red Crescent ambulance to an MDA vehicle so they could get advanced treatment in Israeli and eastern Jerusalem hospitals. He asked for the facilitation of these transfers and the movement of medical equipment and medications to eastern Jerusalem medical institutions.

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