A State of Chronic Emergency: Breaking the Cycle of Endemic War in Gaza – A Conversation with Dr. Ghassan Abu-Sittah.

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21 Jun

A State of Chronic Emergency: Breaking the Cycle of Endemic War in Gaza – A Conversation with Dr. Ghassan Abu-Sittah.

June, 21
Time: 8:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Venue: Online


It is estimated that 250,000 Palestinians have been injured in the Gaza strip since the beginning of the first intifada in 1988. Over the last 13 years, Gaza has endured four wars, numerous air raids, and incursions. This webinar will discuss the challenges facing the humanitarian sector between continuously responding to the exigencies of recurrent emergencies and trying to build capacities in a system that is distorted by the complexity of war injuries. The practical imperative of requiring access to Gaza through Israeli controlled crossings and the moral imperative to advocate against the oppressor and bear witness to an illegal siege have forced the humanitarian sector into an uneasy silence around the siege of Gaza, which forces the population to live under inhumane conditions. The webinar aims to explore these competing and contradictory prirotities based on first-hand account of working in the Palestinian health sector during these four wars and with the humanitarian sector since the first intifada.

  • How did Dr. Ghassan Abu-Sittah experience the most recent war in Gaza?
  • What does it mean to prepare for the “forever emergency”?
  • How do chronic wars distort public health priorities?
  • Should the humanitarian sector attempt to alleviate the suffering in a prolonged siege? Or does it contribute to its longevity?

Moderator: Professor Richard Sullivan

  • Dr. Ghassan Abu Sitta, MBchB, FRCS (Plast)

    American University of Beirut; Lebanon

    Assistant Professor of Clinical Surgery
    Head of Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery
    Co-Director of the Conflict Medicine Program, AUB

    Dr. Abu Sitta is an Assistant Professor of Surgery the Head of Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery at the American University of Beirut Medical Center (AUBMC). He is also Co-Director of the Conflict Medicine Program (CMP) at the Global Health Institute (GHI) and an Honorary Senior Clinical Lecturer, Queen Mary University of London.

    Dr. Abu Sitta works with several NGOs and has gone on medical missions for cleft surgery. He headed the creation of the cleft and craniofacial surgery unit in addition to being a member of the wound care center at the AUBMC.

    Dr. Abu Sitta’s areas of expertise are in burns and combat injuries. His working experience in war zones and dealing with war victims, both medically and socially, has been published in multiple journals such as the “Wall Street Journal” and other newspapers. He also published on blast injuries and changing geographies of war. His publications include several book chapters and most recently the textbook ‘Reconstructing the War Injured Patient’ with Springer. Dr. Abu Sitta received multiple humanistic awards such as the Humanism and Professionalism Physician Award.

    Dr. Abu Sitta graduated from the University of Glasgow and went on to pursue his postgraduate studies in plastic and reconstructive surgery with cleft, craniofacial surgery, and trauma fellowships.
Registration Deadline: 
  • June 21st, 2021 at 2:00 PM