“We, doctors working in Portugal, are opposed to the conflict that is currently taking place on Ukrainian territory and we urgently call for a ceasefire, as well as the immediate existence of an independent and free humanitarian corridor that allows aid to effectively reach those who need it”, say the doctors in the letter.
The challenge for doctors working in Portugal to sign this letter was launched by the Ordem dos Médicos (OM) in order to “save people injured in combat, who are suffering, whether Ukrainian or Russian”, but also to get food to Ukraine, water, medicines and medical supplies, the chairman told Lusa.
“Regardless of the war, the wounded have the right to be treated. It is a matter of human rights and it is in this perspective that we launch this wake-up call that will be replicated all over the world”, he stressed.
According to the chairman of the OM, the thousands of doctors who signed the letter are Portuguese, Russians, Ukrainians, English, Cubans, Brazilians, Spaniards and other nationalities.
“Fortunately, in Portugal we have a diversity of nationalities, in the field of Medicine, which is important and an asset for us”, he said.
For Miguel Guimarães, doctors have an obligation to take an attitude like this “in defense of medical neutrality, in defense of what is the access to health care for the sick, in this case the war wounded”.
In the letter, the doctors called for "an immediate end to hostilities and the resolution of all political questions exclusively by peaceful means."
“We have sworn to consecrate our lives to the service of humanity. Our mission is to save human lives. We want a world without fear. Where no one has to suffer without access to medical care. We want science at the service of life and not destruction”, they say in the letter, justifying that they are “together for peace and life, with humanism and solidarity”.
“To be a doctor is to be on the front line, in the lead, leaving no one alone, in times of peace and war. We exist to serve our patients”, say the signatories, stressing that they do not divide people into “friends and enemies” and do not allow “considerations of religion, nationality, race, political party, or social position” to come between their duty and patient.