A heavy downpour in Gaza that followed six weeks of war has brought with it new concerns and challenges for thousands of Palestinians who have lost their homes, those forced to live in flimsy tents and others fleeing south to escape the Israeli military bombardment.
The start of the rainy season and the possibility of flooding has increased fears that the enclave’s damaged sewage system will be overwhelmed and will spread disease.
“We’re very concerned. We’ve already got outbreaks of diarrhoeal diseases. We’ve already recorded well over 30,000 cases when we would normally expect 2,000 cases in the same period,” said Margaret Harris, World Health Organization (WHO) spokesperson.
The Norwegian Refugee Council said the start of the rainy season could mark “the most difficult week in Gaza” since the conflict began.
Other aid agencies said trying to meet the daily needs of Palestinians has meant they’ve been unable to plan ahead for potential flooding.