Welsh surgeon describes 'evils' perpetrated in war zones at Hay Festival

Hay-on-Wye (Welsh: Y Gelli Gandryll), is a small market town and community in Powys, Wales. Since 1988, it has been home to a literary festival, which draws thousands of visitors over ten days at the beginning of June. The scope of the festival has expanded over the years to include musical performances and film previews. Hay Festival Wales is taking place now until 4 June. In describing the event the organisers state:

'Nobel Prize-winners and novelists, scientists and politicians, historians and musicians talk with audiences in a dynamic exchange of ideas. Hay Festival’s global conversation shares the latest thinking in the arts and sciences with curious audiences live, in print and digitally. Hay Festival also runs wide programmes of education work supporting coming generations of writers and culturally hungry audiences of all ages.'

One of those speaking at this years festival has been David Nott, a Welsh consultant surgeon who works as a general and vascular surgeon, but also volunteers to work in disaster and war zones. Today (May 29 2017) he presented BBC Radio Wales’ Patrick Hannan Lecture 2017. Titled A Doctor At War, David Nott talked about his medical work in disaster and combat zones around the world, for agencies such as Médecins Sans Frontières and the Red Cross. Including in Syria, Afghanistan, Bosnia, Chad, Darfur, Gaza, Haiti, Iraq, Libya, Sierra Leone and Gaza over a period of 20 years. This remarkable man spoke of his motivation in returning to these dangerous locations and placing himself in harm’s way. Talking of his recent work during the conflict in Syria he described the "evil" of those who bomb hospitals. David Nott told the audience how perpetrators claimed the bombings to be "justifiable and intentional". He went on to say "Hospitals must be protected and respected. To bomb and destroy hospitals is not just sinful, it is evil". 

Image from BBC: David Nott with others undertaking medical work in war zone.

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