Media Release for Thursday 15th March 2012
Campaigners around the world will today (Thursday 15th March) mark one year of violence in Syria by calling on Russia to back UN Security Council action to end the crisis.
On the occasion of International Women's Day, 8 March, the Zimbabwe Association of Doctors for Human Rights issued a statement focusing on the lack of access of women in Zimbabwe to much-needed and life-saving maternal health care.
Although Zimbabwe has experienced cholera outbreaks since 1992, the outbreak which began in August 2008 is the worst ever in this country and is set to become the worst outbreak on the African continent. Violations of the rights to safe and potable water, adequate sanitation and a collapsed health system were the cause of the outbreak. The course of the outbreak has been difficult to predict and to control.
To date, the Government of Zimbabwe has fallen far short of its responsibility to ensure the availability of appropriate health services.
Referring to the humanitarian crisis following the Israeli army's attacks on Gaza, IFHHRO member Physicians for Human Rights-Israel shared that most Palestinians were not aware of the brief cease fire on Wednesday 7 January and therefore could not take advantage of it, e.g., by evacuating wounded relatives and purchasing essential goods. PHR-Israel called upon the Israeli army to inform all Palestinians, in any form, whether by loudspeakers or any other way, of the planned pause. The shooting did stop, but there were not enough teams or enough coordination mechanisms in place to …
The Zimbabwe Association of Doctors for Human Rights (ZADHR), an IFHHRO member, published a press release on 19 November 2008 stating that Zimbabwe's public health system is in a state of collapse and in need of urgent action to rescue it. According to the press release, the system "has been paralysed by drug shortages, insufficient medical supplies, dilapidated infrastructure, equipment breakdowns and brain drain." The main referral hospitals in the country have been virtually closed and most district hospitals and municipal clinics are barely functioning or closed.
It is with the gravest concern that ZADHR reports that patients injured in incidents of violence and torture around Zimbabwe have continued to flood, and nearly overwhelm, the health care system throughout June.
Utrecht, the Netherlands-- The International Federation of Health and Human Rights Organisations (IFHHRO) today urged the World Medical Association (WMA) to send a delegation to Zimbabwe prior to the upcoming elections, to assess the state of health and human rights abuses in the country.
In a letter to the WMA, IFHHRO expressed deep concern about the rapidly collapsing health care in Zimbabwe, violations of the Right to the Highest Attainable Standard of Health, and about the increasing number of civilians suffering from severe physical and mental harm due to the political …