American nurse says 'will go in a heartbeat' back to Gaza, bears it all on CNN

08 Nov 2023 01:53pm
Nurse activity manager for Doctors Without Borders, Emily Callahan speaking in an interview with CNN - Screenshot from CNN interview
Nurse activity manager for Doctors Without Borders, Emily Callahan speaking in an interview with CNN - Screenshot from CNN interview

SHAH ALAM - An American nurse who returned to the United States (UN) after working in Gaza says some of her colleagues had chosen to stay in the besieged territory despite knowing they could be killed.

In an interview with CNN, Doctors Without Borders nurse activity manager Emily Callahan said she had been in Gaza since August and she was evacuated on Wednesday.

Callahan further described thousands of Palestinians living in terrible condition while struggling with attacks from Israel.

"There were children with massive burns down their faces, down their necks, all over their limbs and because the hospitals are so overwhelmed, they are being discharged immediately after.

"And they are being discharged to these camps with no access to running water.

"There are 50,000 people at that camp now and four toilets and they are given two hours of water every 12 hours," Callahan told to CNN.

Callahan said people would wander around with fresh open burns, wounds and partial amputations conditions.

"Parents brings their children to us going 'Please, can you help?' and we have no supplies," she added.

Related Articles:

When asked on will she ever go back to Gaza, Callahan without a second thought said she would.

"In an absolute hearbeat, I would go back to Gaza. My heart is in Gaza and it will stay in Gaza.

"The Palestinian people I've worked with both our national staff in my office as well as my staff at Indonesia in the hospital were some of the most incredible people I've ever met in my life," she said.

Commenting further, Callahan said that one her colleagues, who is also a nurse was killed in the first weekend of the counter-strikes war on Oct 7.

"He was killed when the ambulance outside the hospital was blown up," she said.

When the evacuation orders to leave Gaza came up, Callahan said she immediately texted her hospital staff to see if they would come with her.

"I said 'Did any of you move south? Did any of you get out like, are any of you coming down this way?" Callahan questioned.

"And the only answers I got was, 'This is our community. This is our family. These are our friends, if they are going to kill us, we are going to die saving as many people as we can." Callahan admits that she worries every day about the safety of her colleagues.

She said she would send out a text message every morning asking 'Are you alive?'.

Israel launched a series of airstrikes on Gaza since it declared war on Hamas on Oct 8.

The ongoing was has resulted in civilian deaths and injuries and more than 10,000 Palestinians have died, with thousands more injured.