A few months ago, I had the opportunity to see Dr. Khaled Kandil receive an award from the Syrian American Medical Society at their annual conference in Gaziantep, Turkey. He was being honored for establishing the dialysis center at Bab al-Hawa Hospital – one of the few remaining treatment centers in the opposition-held territories in Syria.
On March 28, 2015, Jabhat al-Nusra and allied opposition groups wrested Idlib city from government control in Syria. The following day, the Syrian air force attacked the city’s Red Crescent-run hospital with rockets, causing significant damage and forcing the hospital to close.
PHR's Tech & Human Rights Blog Series is meant to highlight the intersection between technology and human rights, and to examine the increasing role that technology can play in advancing human rights around the world.
By the end of 2011, government security forces were bringing detained members of the opposition to my hospital for treatment. Members of the security forces would insult and physically attack the medical staff, while also causing chaos by shooting their weapons into the air.
2014 was a distressing year for health care workers in conflict areas around the world, as attacks on medical professionals and facilities were carried out in numerous countries. As these attacks continue, they must be appropriately documented in order to increase available information, raise awareness, and find appropriate solutions that facilitate accountability and ultimately prevent future violence.