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UAE doctor risks life to treat injured in Gaza

"I don't think I have ever been so worried about anything Baba [dad] has ever done, which says a lot as he is in the hot seat for spontaneous ideas. But I don't think I have ever been so proud in my whole life," says 17 year-old Sami Dabbagh in a letter on his father's humanitarian aid journey to Gaza.

Image Credit:Supplied Picture
Dr Ali Dabbagh with his son Sami Dabbagh.
Gulf News

Dubai: "I don't think I have ever been so worried about anything Baba [dad] has ever done, which says a lot as he is in the hot seat for spontaneous ideas. But I don't think I have ever been so proud in my whole life," says 17 year-old Sami Dabbagh in a letter on his father's humanitarian aid journey to Gaza.

Dr. Ali Dabbagh, a Dubai-resident and doctor said he had no choice but to risk travelling to Gaza to offer his medical support. He spoke to Gulf News from Cyprus before joining the next free boat headed for Gaza.

'Not an option'

"As a doctor, doing nothing is not an option. I cannot stand idly by and watch this on TV screens," he said.

He hopes to stay over and volunteer to work in one of the Gaza hospitals.

He is accompanying activists from the 'Free Gaza Movement'. According to a press release issued by the 'Free Gaza Movement', "We are doctors, journalists, members of parliament, and human rights observers trying to reach the people of Gaza to deliver much needed aid and witness the atrocities being committed against the Palestinians there.

"Israel is hereby put on notice that we are coming. We will announce our exact departure date, time and route, travelling from Cypriot waters, into international waters, directly into Gaza territorial waters, never nearing Israeli waters.

The Israeli Navy, Ministry of Defence, and Foreign Ministry will all receive a copy of this notice.

"Any attack on our vessel will be premeditated and any harm inflicted on the 30 civilians on board will be the result of a deliberate attack on unarmed civilians," said the statement.

Dr Dabbagh was pained at the images he saw in Gaza and took it upon himself to offer his services in the Gaza Strip.

Despite warnings

This was despite warnings issued by the World Health Organisation that Gaza's hospitals are running on backup generators for the fifth consecutive day.

His wife Sana Dabbagh said she was praying day and night for the safe return of her husband.

"We have been through many difficult decisions but this one is the hardest. I knew from the start that Ali would want to go on this trip. I know he is up for this mission and he has our complete support," said Sana.

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