Sat, 25 Dec 2021 - 01:02 GMT
Sat, 25 Dec 2021 - 01:02 GMT
CAIRO - 25 December 2021: Amal, 24 years old, a smart creative ambitious doctor. She was in a hurry to go back and follow up on her patients in the hospital. While crossing the busy street to buy lunch, a stray bullet pierced her body and lodged in the kidneys. Amal fell to the ground and began the painful struggle for her survival. She spent one week in a coma while her colleagues at the intensive care unit struggled hard to save her life. Her family, friends and Jamal, her fiancé were praying for her. Jamal was remembering their memories together and imagined their future wedding in 6 months.
By the end of the week, Amal showed waking up signs and her body started slowly to respond to medication. However, nobody imagined that the unseen COVID-19 virus would still hit her weak body. Amal’s second round of fight for life lasted only four hours before she passed away and her dreams disappeared forever.
Amal’s sad story is one of many similar stories that take place every day in many of the Arab countries that suffer from armed conflicts and protracted crises. Those who escape a stray of bullets may drown in the seas while migrating to seek a better life, opportunities and hope. Others die or face lifelong sufferings due to many reasons in the refugee camps: the extreme weather, diseases, lack of essential services, armed attacks on their tents, gender-based violence, including FGM and early pregnancy complications, lack of lifesaving sexual and reproductive health services, water scarcity and food shortage. Millions of refugees and internally displaced people in the Arab region go through this daily, but never lose hope of an end to their suffering. They still have dreams and rights.
The United Nations, including UNFPA, works hard to uphold their rights and help them make their dreams come true. In countries facing humanitarian situations, people's lives and dignity should be protected. All people around the world are equal and have equal rights. UNFPA works to save the lives of women and girls, including survivors of gender-based violence, by providing them safe spaces and other services. However, the reality on the ground is very challenging. I call on all humanitarian actors to keep up their challenging efforts and work hard to support those who are most in need and maintain their abilities to provide hope.
I hope 2022 brings a better inclusive global environment that allows us to spend all possible means and resources to enable countries to achieve the sustainable development agenda and provide capacity to governments and different actors to ensure people-centered leadership and human rights-based governance the value people’s lives, all peoples, everywhere.
Article by: Dr. Luay Shabaneh, UNFPA Arab States Regional Director