As the rocket count after Operation Cast Lead climbs over 226 rockets and five Trauma Centers in the Sderot region are set to close down, five top Australian parliamentarians visited Sderot, Israel on Wednesday August 5th. Guided by the Sderot Media Center, Shadow Minister of Foreign Affairs the Hon. Member of Parliament Julie Bishop, Members of Parliament Bruce Billson and Louise Markus, and Senators Simon Birmingham and Scott Ryan all visited residents of the trauma ridden city and the Sderot Emergency Center that closed down last month.
Hon Julie Bishop MP with the diplomatic group visiting the closed Sderot Emergency Center.
The Sderot Emergency Center, that was closed July 21st, was specially opened for the parliamentary group. Devorah Katz, a Sderot resident that volunteers at the emergency center spoke to the parliamentarians about the desperate need for financial aid to reopen the center. “Everybody here knows the rockets will start escalating sometime in the next two months," Katz told the group of parliamentarians while sitting in the center’s bomb shelter that doubles as another treatment room. Katz highlighted the financial crisis all the trauma centers in Sderot are having and continued by specifying the emergency center, "we don’t have a first aid center to treat any of the terror victims.”