Travel plea for conjoined twins in blockaded Gaza

One-day-old Palestinian conjoined twins lie in an incubator at the nursery at al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza City on Oct 22, 2017.
One-day-old Palestinian conjoined twins lie in an incubator at the nursery at al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza City on Oct 22, 2017.PHOTO: AFP
One-day-old Palestinian conjoined twins lie in an incubator at the nursery at al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza City on Oct 22, 2017.
One-day-old Palestinian conjoined twins lie in an incubator at the nursery at al-Shifa Hospital in Gaza City on Oct 22, 2017.PHOTO: AFP

GAZA CITY, Palestinian Territories (AFP) - Conjoined twins born in Gaza on Sunday (Oct 22) need to leave the blockaded Palestinian enclave for treatment crucial to their survival, their doctor and a family member said.

"A woman gave birth this morning to Siamese twins joined at the stomach and pelvis," Allam Abu Hamda, head of the neonatal unit at Gaza's Shifa Hospital, told AFP.

Abu Hamda said the girls' complicated condition "cannot be dealt with in the Gaza Strip, so we hope they will be transferred abroad for a separation."

An uncle who preferred not to be named said: "We hope they can leave to do what is necessary for their rare conditions."

Conjoined twins that share key organs have low chances of survival.

The twins, whose condition Abu Hamda said was stable, have one shared leg, but separate hearts and lungs.

Conjoined twins born in Gaza in November 2016 later died.

Israel has maintained a blockade of the enclave for a decade, citing security fears over Gaza's Islamist rulers Hamas.

In 2010, conjoined twins from Gaza were transferred to Saudi Arabia for surgery to separate them, but doctors in Riyadh said their condition was too delicate to operate and they died.