A five-year-old Palestinian child has become the 3,000th to receive lifesaving surgery from the Israeli humanitarian organisation Save a Child’s Heart.

The Israeli charity has delivered life-saving treatment to over 6,000 children in total from 65 countries around the world, most of them from developing nations.

The 3,000th child was Amir Yichya Mabchuch from Jabaliya, just north of Gaza City.

The Times of Israel reports:

The child has not enjoyed a normal, carefree childhood. He has been unable to perform simple tasks and he has not been allowed to run around, or even walk for long periods, lest the exertion prove too much for his fragile heart. Instead, his entire life, he has been under constant medical supervision.

When Amir’s family found out about the option of getting him heart surgery in Israel during a check-up in Gaza, they jumped at the opportunity.

“When the doctors told us there was a possibility for Israeli doctors to carry out the complicated operation Amir needed, we were so happy. Everyone here in Gaza talks about how Israeli doctors are the most professional in the world and that they can be trusted completely,” Amir’s mother said.

The operation that 5-year-old Amir received was complicated, requiring advanced technology that was unavailable in Gaza — and the surgery went off without a hitch, according to surgeon Hagi Dekel.

“The surgery was carried out in order to remove an obstruction in the left ventricle. Such an obstruction, if left untreated, can damage the valve, and in the worst-case scenario, cause sudden death…The aortic valve was opened, and the thick tissue obstructing the valve was successfully removed,” he said.

Deputy Director of Save a Child’s Heart Tamar Shapira said the work not only saves lives but also helps bridge the gap between Israelis and Palestinians.

We think it is wonderful to see how Israelis are helping Palestinians and pray it will go a long way to showing Palestinians that their neighbours are not their enemy.

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