On December 7, 2009, the Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR) condemned Hamas for imposing travel restrictions on individuals seeking medical care outside of Gaza. According to PCHR, Hamas’ policy, in particular the requirement to get permission from the Palestinian Ministry of Interior, makes medical exit visas difficult to obtain. On December 7 alone, according to PCHR, Hamas prevented 37 individuals from traveling to hospitals.

In contrast, many NGOs, especially Physicians for Human Rights-Israel (PHR-I), routinely blame Israel alone for “frequently delay[ing] or refus[ing] [necessary] permits,” “foot-dragging,” and even for Palestinians faking illnesses to exit Gaza.