Three attacks on health facilities were reported in Sinai. According to the WHO, on February 7, militants used improvised explosive devices (IEDs) to damage a health facility located in El Sabil village, at the entrance to Al-Arish in North Sinai. In March, the Egyptian armed forces defused an explosive device near Arish’s public hospital. According to the WHO and MENASTREAM, in May, the Islamic State (also known as ISIS) claimed responsibility for the detonation of an IED on a police vehicle near the “Fevers Hospital” south of Al-Arish.
Three attacks on health workers were perpetrated by police. On January 24, a police officer assaulted a nurse who would not allow him to visit his father at the intensive care unit of Belbeis Central Hospital outside visiting hours. Nurses gathered to protest the attack, and services at the hospital were temporarily suspended. On September 11, a police officer, along with his brother and nephew, beat a neurologist at Shebin El Koum Educational Hospital for refusing to provide him with priority care. The doctor was treated for a concussion and an eye injury.
There were two reports of access constraints. On February 9, Egyptian authorities physically shut down a clinic run by the Al Nadeem Center for the Rehabilitation of Victims of Violence and Torture, an NGO. The center cares for approximately 250 cases a month and has documented 14,700 torture cases and 1,000 cases of domestic abuse over the last 20 years. Suzan Fayad, the center’s director, said, “We stopped documenting torture cases for the public reports two years ago. We’ve been doing it for 20 years, but we are now too worried about our victims’ safety and wellbeing.”
Egypt continues restricting passage in and out of Gaza through the Rafah border crossing. The crossing has been closed since 2007 and only opens intermittently for three to five days every few months. On August 18, Egyptian authorities prevented an Algerian aid convoy from entering Gaza through the Rafah crossing. According to sources, the Egyptian authorities forced the convoy, which comprised 14 trucks carrying medicines, medical equipment, and electricity generators for Gaza’s hospitals, to return to Algeria despite having all the required documents.