Israeli hospital insists on caring for Palestinian girl

Thursday, August 30, 2007 |  by Staff Writer

A rehabilitation hospital in Jerusalem is refusing a government order to transfer a paralyzed Palestinian girl to a Palestinian hospital in Ramallah, insisting that she cannot receive proper care there.

Six-year-old Maria Amin was wounded during an Israeli air strike against a car carrying an Islamic Jihad terrorist in Gaza last year. Her grandmother, mother and older brother were killed in the strike.

Israel's Defense Ministry responded to the tragedy by bringing Maria, her father and younger brother to Jerusalem and paying for their living accommodations and Maria's rehabilitation at the Alyn Hospital Rehabilitation Center.

When the rehabilitation course ended, the ministry ordered the hospital to transfer Maria to a medical center in Ramallah, where it would buy an apartment for the family. But an official at Alyn said she contacted the hospital in Ramallah and was informed that they were unprepared to adequately care for a completely paralyzed girl who requires the aid of a respirator.

Shirley Meyer told Reuters that Maria “won't be going anywhere” until her well-being and proper medical care can be assured. Meyer and Maria's father, Hamdi Amin, have successfully petitioned Israel's Supreme Court to block the Defense Ministry transfer order, at least temporarily.

Speaking to a Reuters reporter in Hebrew, Maria, whose family was destroyed in an Israeli air strike, said she wants “to stay here and build a house here [in Israel]. I don't want to leave.”

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