Photo Credit: Ail Ahmed/Flash90
Health workers spray disinfectant in the Al-omari Mosque in Gaza City, March 15, 2020.

The IDF’s Coordination of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT) and the World Health Organization (WHO) purchased and delivered a PCR machine, an advanced medical device used for the detection of Coronavirus (COVID-19), through the Allenby Bridge and Erez Crossings into the Gaza Strip on Sunday.

The machine, costing tens of thousands of dollars, was donated by an international organization with the help of the WHO and will be used at Shifa Hospital in Gaza City where it will process samples for detecting the Coronavirus, doubling the rate of Corona tests in Gaza.

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The machine was brought from an unnamed Muslim country through Jordan.

In addition to the device, the WHO donated 500 test kits and reagents.

This initiative joins a number of other actions promoted by COGAT in recent months “in close and exceptional cooperation with the international community,” the IDF noted, including the delivery of virus detection kits, protection kits for medical teams, as well as drugs and antiseptics donated by the international community.

“This coordination is an example of the broad activities promoted by COGAT who identified an acute need and worked together with the international community, from finding the donor, through purchasing the device, to overcoming all the challenges on its way to enter into the Gaza Strip,” stated Col. Sharon Biton, Head of the COGAT’s Civilian Department.

He expressed his “deep appreciation to the countless partners in the defense establishment and abroad who have also made it possible to complete this mission,” he added.

Israel has significantly assisted the Palestinian Authority (PA) in its struggle to stem the spread of the virus, and the UN Secretary-General António Guterres has praised the cooperation between Israel and the PA on the issue.

Speaking last month, Guterres stated that “Israelis and Palestinians are a prime example of cooperation in the fight against Corona.”

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Aryeh Savir is director of the International division of Tazpit News Agency.