LONDON - Attacks on health workers, hospitals and clinics in conflict zones surge by 25 per cent last year to their highest level on record, a new report has found.

The Safeguarding Health in Conflict Coalition, composed of 40 groups including medical charities, reported 2,562 incidents of violence or obstructions including arrests, killings and kidnappings of doctors and strikes across hospitals in 30 conflicts.

Where the rise was largely driven by fresh wars in Gaza and Sudan, ongoing conflicts such as Ukraine and South Sudan also fuelled attacks “at a relentless pace”, said the Safeguarding Health in Conflict coalition.