by Intisar Alqsar
Moftah, a 10-year-old boy from Tawergha, a town south-east of the Libyan capital Tripoli, lies in his hospital bed, exhausted after receiving his first daily dose of medication to treat acute anaemia. His mother tells us, “Moftah has had anaemia from the time he was 1 year old and since then we have had to come to the hospital three times a day for treatment. This trip has become our daily routine and we don’t mind. We want our child to live his life like any normal healthy child, playing with joy.” She tears up as she says this.
However, the outbreak of violence in Libya in 2011, and the persistent insecurity and recurring armed clashes since, have made sustaining these hospital visits extremely challenging for the family. “The medicine is only available at Misrata Hospital, about 40 km away from Tawergha. Usually, we go to Misrata to buy the medicine.” But the journey is dangerous, especially at night. “The security situation has forced us to stop his treatment for several months … which negatively affects Moftah’s health, since he needs three doses day.”
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