GAZA CITY, Palestine
Palestinian health authorities confirmed one fatality and 44 additional infections from the coronavirus in the blockaded Gaza Strip on Tuesday.
In a statement, the Health Ministry said a 57-year-old man, who was suffering from cancer, had died from the virus.
The territory’s virus tally rose to 400 confirmed cases, including five deaths, and 76 recoveries.
“The number of active cases in Gaza has reached 319,” the ministry said, going on to call on residents to pursue social distancing to help stem the spread of the pandemic.
"The Gaza Strip is still in the stage of containing the pandemic and breaking the cycles of its spread, which requires preventing movement and adhering to preventive measures," the statement said.
The ministry warned of a shortage of necessary medical supplies to curb the virus outbreak due to the 14-year Israeli blockade on the strip.
Israel has imposed a crippling siege on the Gaza Strip in 2007 after the Palestinian group Hamas seized control of the territory from its rival group Fatah, badly affecting livelihood in the Palestinian enclave.
Since it originated in China last December, the coronavirus has claimed more than 850,500 lives in 188 countries and regions. The US, Brazil, India, and Russia are currently the worst-hit countries.
Nearly 25.5 million COVID-19 cases have been reported worldwide, with recoveries exceeding 16.82 million, according to figures compiled by the US' Johns Hopkins University.
*Bassel Barakat contributed to this report from Ankara