The al-Mezan Center for Human Rights issued a statement strongly denouncing the death of a Palestinian child, from the besieged Gaza Strip, after Israel refused to allow her to transfer out of the walled-in enclave, despite her serious health condition resulting from a metabolism disorder.

Al-Mezan said the family received a referral to treat the child at the al-Makassed Hospital, in occupied East Jerusalem, and were supposed to travel through the Erez terminal. But Israeli authorities kept denying the applications for permits to leave Gaza.

The child, Aya Ghaleb Abu Mitleq, 5, from Abasan al-Kabeera town, east of Khan Younis, in the southern part of the Gaza Strip, has been suffering from serious health complications before the family managed to get a referral to al-Makassed Hospital.

The family got two appointments for the child; the first was supposed to be on February 02, 2017, but Israel did not even respond to their application for a permit to allow them to cross Erez terminal and head to occupied Jerusalem, despite repeated attempts b the family to get a response to their application.

The second missed appointment was supposed to be on March 19, 2017, and the third was scheduled for April 27, 2017. But again, Israeli authorities kept ignoring the repeated permit applications.

The child suffered another serious health complication, and was instantly hospitalized at Nasser Hospital, in Khan Younis, where she died on April 17, 2017.

Al-Mezan stated that three Palestinians have died under similar circumstances since the beginning of this year, and that Israel has only been approving approximately 20% of permit applications in the first quarter of this year, similar to 2016.

Al-Mezan said that the ongoing Israeli violations, and the deadly siege, are serious breaches of International Law, the Fourth Geneva Convention, and every related human rights and international treaty, which all guarantee medical treatment for those who need it.

It stated that Article #2/38 of the Fourth Geneva Convention of 1949, clearly says that occupying powers must not only allow all patients access to hospitals and medical centers, but also provide them with the professional treatment it grants its own citizens. The Article also guarantees protection to all civilians.

The human rights center further reported that International Humanitarian law, especially article #1/12 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights of 1976, and Article #13 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, guarantee the Freedom of Movement, Social, Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.

Al-Mezan strongly denounced the ongoing illegal and deadly Israeli siege, and held Israel fully responsible for the death of the child, one of the dozens of Palestinians who have died under similar conditions over the past ten years, and affirmed that the siege will continue to claim innocent civilian lives.

The Center also demanded a credible and serious investigation into the child’s death, and called on the international community to pressure Israel to lift its illegal siege on Gaza, which has continued for the past 11 years.

The Center asked the international community oblige Israel to abide by international laws, including the International Humanitarian Law, and all related agreements.