UN Expert Warns of Long-Term Mental Health Crisis in Gaza Amid Ongoing Conflict

A United Nations expert on Monday conveyed a warning that there was a peril that mental illnesses could emerge themselves years from now among the people of Gaza because of the present conflict scenario. “Obviously, we locate the physical injury, and because it’s physical, one can appreciate the severity of it,” said Tlaleng Mofokeng, U.N. special rapporteur on the right to health.

“But serious mental pain that will then turn into anxiety and other kinds of mental illnesses later on in life is really, really essential to begin to ponder intentionally about.”  UNICEF said in February it estimated that 17,000 children in Gaza were unaccompanied or had been taken far away from their families in the midst of  the conflict, and that approximately all children in the enclave were thought to need mental health assistance .

Palestinian health authorities say exceeding than 34,000 people have been murdered in Israel’s assault, which started after Hamas fighters attacked Israel on Oct. 7, killing some 1,200 people and kidnapping another 253 to Gaza, according to Israeli tallies.The Israeli assault has destroyed hospitals across the enclave, which involves Al Shifa Hospital, the Gaza Strip’s biggest before the war, and killed and injured health workers.

Israel accuses Hamas of regularly using hospitals, ambulances and other medical facilities for military purposes.”The health system in Gaza has been wholly obliterated, and the right to health has been decimated at every level,” Mofokeng revealed . “The Circumstances, are incompatible with the understanding of everyone to the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health.”