Palestinian child treated at Cohen Children’s due to wartime famine

Palestinian child treated at Cohen Children’s due to wartime famine
Four Palestinian children arrived at JFK Airport Sunday to receive medical treatment in the United States, including at Cohen Children's Medical Center in Queens. (Photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons, taken in 2019)

A Palestinian child is being treated at Northwell Health’s Cohen Children’s Hospital in Queens for malnourishment caused by famine during the war in Gaza.

Four injured Palestinian children were seen arriving at John F. Kennedy International Airport from Cairo, Egypt, Sunday, led by the hand or carried through the airport by their family members.

The children were flown in by Palestine Children’s Relief Fund, an organization that provides free medical care for children who lack the medical resources they need to treat their injuries and illnesses.

Efforts to reach the Palestine Children’s Relief Fund for comment were unavailing.

The war in Gaza followed Hamas’ attack on Israel Oct. 7, which killed about 1,200 people and took hundreds of people hostage – of which many remain in captivity. In Gaza, more than 34,000 people have died since the attack in October, according to the Gaza Health Ministry.

Just two days after the children arrived in New York, Israel launched an attack on Rafah and seized control of Gaza’s vital border crossing into Egypt. The attack came hours after Hamas agreed to a cease-fire deal Monday, but Israel has not accepted the deal.

The Palestine Children’s Relief Fund has provided refuge for more than 100 children in Egypt, of which 60 were transported to other countries for aid. Seven children were sent to the United States, including the four who arrived in New York Sunday.

A swath of people gathered at the Queens airport on Sunday to welcome the children and their families to New York, holding welcome signs and shouting their love for them.

Two of the children were injured during Israeli airstrikes in Gaza, one sustained injuries during a rocket and grenade attack at a hospital and the final child is battling malnourishment and cystic fibrosis, CBS News New York reported.

The child dealing with malnourishment, who the New York Times identified as Fadi Alzant, will be treated at Northwell Health’s Cohen Children’s Medical Center in Queens. Fadi, a 6-year-old with strawberry blond hair, weighs in at just about 25 pounds due to malnourishment from famine, The New York Times reported.

The children were selected through referrals, The Times reported based on information from the Palestine Children’s Relief Fund, many times found through social media.

Fadi was discovered by the organization after a video of his mother pleading for help went viral online.

The other three children were making a pitstop in New York Sunday with their journeys ending elsewhere at other hospitals in Ohio, Texas and South Carolina.

Saja Bilal Junaid, 3, was seen in the airport with a large bandage surrounding her head, making her eyes, nose and mouth barely visible. Her face sustained third-degree burns after an Israeli airstrike hit the Jabalia refugee camp where she was housed, according to The Times.

Interviewed by CBS News New York, Saja’s mother said that thankfully her daughter is doing well in the aftermath of her injuries, still able to play and seen bouncing around the airport, but that resources to help her daughter were unavailable in Gaza.

Saja will be treated at a hospital in Dayton, Ohio.

Rakan Aldardasawi, 9, was injured in an Israeli airstrike that buried him under rubble for hours before being rescued. His three sisters were killed in the strike, the New York Times reported.

Rakan will be traveling to Galveston, Texas, for treatment.

Adam Abu Ajwa, 11, was injured on Jan. 16 when his shelter was bombed. His mother and brother were killed and his 26-year-old sister was also injured.

Adam’s sister joined him on his journey to the United States, which will end in South Carolina. She told The Times of the horrors they endured and her focus on getting her brother treatment, but that someday they will return to Gaza.

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  1. The Diasporas of induced World Wars
    Is accelerating as so-called Political
    Leaders seek to capitalize on fear and Xenophobia to gain and retain power.
    As regions in conflict grow, the United States
    Will be the new home for those who can escape
    to survive. Many will complain at the stress and strain this will cause. The US remains the most well-resourced nation on earth, and needs to step up. We can assist around the world, or continue
    to be the last stop on a global conflict highway.

    Ronald Brinn
    Great Neck


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