Reuters reports that in December, an Israeli shell struck the largest fertility clinic in the Gaza Strip. As a result, many couples permanently lost the opportunity to have children.

The explosion blasted the lids off five liquid nitrogen tanks at the Al Basma IVF center that held 4,000 embryos and, 1,000 more sperm specimens and unfertilized eggs. All of them were lost. The agency notes that this is just one example of what befell the 2.3 million people of Gaza.

"We know deeply what these 5,000 lives, or potential lives, meant for the parents, either for the future or for the past. At least half of the couples — those who can no longer produce sperm or eggs to make viable embryos — will not have another chance to get pregnant," said Bahaeldeen Ghalayini, 73, the Cambridge-trained obstetrician and gynecologist who established the clinic in 1997.

Reuters also told the story of 32-year-old Seba Jaafarawi, for whom IVF was the only way to conceive. The woman shared memories of how physically and psychologically challenging in vitro fertilization was.

In September 2023, she finally became pregnant. However, after Hamas attacked Israel and the IDF retaliated, she could not be under medical supervision. Only after moving to Egypt was she able to undergo an ultrasound. The check showed that she was pregnant with twins.

However, she was unable to maintain the pregnancy. As in previous times, a miscarriage occurred. Due to her health condition, she cannot produce new eggs. Several remaining embryos perished, along with the clinic where she underwent fertilization.