Jakarta (ANTARA) - Indonesia's humanitarian non-governmental organization MER-C has dispatched a team of volunteers to the Gaza Strip, Palestine, for supervising the second-phase construction of the Indonesian Hospital.

The 11-member team comprises doctors, engineers, electrical mechanical experts, and medical instrumentation experts, MER-C Indonesia noted in a press release here on Sunday.

The volunteers departed for Cairo, Egypt, on Sunday morning and were scheduled to arrive there on Sunday night. Next, they will travel by land to the Rafah border and then enter Gaza.

Faried Thalib, a member of the Presidium of MER-C Indonesia, that leads the Indonesian Hospital Development Team, remarked that the supervisory team will check the second-phase construction work of the Indonesian Hospital in Gaza that has been ongoing for a year.

"Last year, we had dispatched 32 volunteers to the Gaza Strip to begin the second phase of construction to build two additional floors, to add 100 more beds, and equip additional medical devices, as the existing building, with 100 beds, is not adequate to accommodate patients coming for treatment," Thalib stated.

Indonesia's MER-C supervision team will only be able to enter Gaza after obtaining permissions from the local authorities to enter Egypt and Gaza.

"After waiting for some 3.5 months, we finally obtained the two permits, and we decided to go to Gaza immediately," he noted, adding that the supervision team would be on duty in the Gaza Strip for a two-week period.

Currently, 29 volunteers are supporting the second-phase development of the Indonesian Hospital in Gaza. The construction activity is estimated to take 1.5 to two years, depending on the situation on the ground.

The second-phase construction and additional medical equipment cost some Rp70 billion to Rp75 billion.

"Bismillah (In the name of Allah), hopefully, we would be able to realize the development of the Indonesian Hospital to demonstrate the Indonesian people's love and support for the Palestinian people, who have been struggling (for their country's independence)," Thalib added.

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Translator: Indriani, Fardah
Editor: Sri Haryati
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