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Family appeals for baby formula banned from Gaza

Dec. 30, 2009 11:20 P.M. (Updated: Dec. 31, 2009 4:58 P.M.)
Gaza – Ma’an – Gazan resident Muhammad Abu Shabab appealed to the Palestinian Ministry of Health to put pressure on Israel to allow the import of Galactomin 19 infant formula for his 4-month-old nephew.

Abu Shabab said in a statement that his nephew, Yahiya Ahmad Abu Shabab, has been suffering chronic diarrhea since he was born at Nasser Hospital in Khan Younis, and that the formula is the only thing likely to stabilize his condition.

The formula is designed for children with intolerances to lactose, galactose and glucose.

After Yahiya's birth, he was treated at a hospital in Jaffa for digestion problems and returned home with four large containers of Galactomin 19 formula. According to his uncle, the last of the boy's containers of formula will soon be empty.

There are no alternative formulas in the Gaza Strip.

Abu Shabab said he approached local authorities, NGOs, and companies but could not locate solution that his nephew could use.

Israel bans hundreds of goods from entering the Gaza Strip as a part of the blockade that began in June 2007.

The list of banned goods is not public but includes numerous food and medical items. According to officials, only 36 different products were allowed into the Gaza Strip via Israeli crossings in December.
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