The healthcare system in Gaza Strip may not be able to cater to the patients in the event of a rise in coronavirus cases, a Palestinian human rights group warned Thursday.

The Gaza-based Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR) has urged international intervention “before it is too late to prevent a healthcare system collapse.”

"The healthcare facilities in Gaza are already on the verge of collapse due to the Israeli-imposed closure on the Gaza Strip for the last 13 years, exacerbated by the repercussions of the Palestinian internal division and political bickering," it said in a statement.

Gaza is home to nearly two million people. Israel has imposed movement restrictions in the territory since the Palestinian Second Intifada in 2000. Restrictions intensified in June 2007 when it imposed a land, sea and air blockade, citing security concerns.

Yesterday, the territory's Health Ministry reported seven new infections, bringing the tally to nine.

Last week, Michael Lynk, UN special rapporteur on the situation of human rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967, said he was worried about the potential impact of COVID-19 on the Gaza Strip population.

The Gaza health care system was collapsing even before the pandemic, he added.

After first appearing in Wuhan, China last December, the virus has spread to at least 175 countries and territories.

The number of confirmed cases worldwide has surpassed 472,000, while the death toll is over 21,300, according to data compiled by the U.S.-based Johns Hopkins University.