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Business News/ News / World/  ‘Living hell’ Gaza ‘graveyard’ for thousands of children: UNICEF amid Israel’s relentless airstrikes
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‘Living hell’ Gaza ‘graveyard’ for thousands of children: UNICEF amid Israel’s relentless airstrikes

Israel-Gaza war news: As Benjamin Netanyahu-led Israel continues to batter Gaza with strikes to “root out Hamas terrorists”, world agencies have highlighted that the number of children affected by the Israel-Gaza war could rise

Israel-Gaza war: Children look on from behind a gate as mourners attend a funeral of Palestinians killed in Israeli strikes, in Khan Younis (REUTERS)Premium
Israel-Gaza war: Children look on from behind a gate as mourners attend a funeral of Palestinians killed in Israeli strikes, in Khan Younis (REUTERS)

UNICEF, a United Nations agency, said on Tuesday that the Gaza Strip has become the graveyard for children and thousands of kids have died in just two weeks, while flagging the lack of “clean water, mass displacement, the overcrowding, and the damage to water and sanitation infrastructure" in the coming days amid the relentless airstrikes by Israel.

Since October 7 when Hamas miltants, dominant in the Gaza Strip, stormed across the border and launched a multi-fold attack on Israel, the Jewish state has heavily bombarded the neighbouring state. In the early hours of October 7, Hamas militants infiltrated the Israeli territory, killing 1,400 people, mostly civilians, and kidnapping at least 240 others, including children.

The health ministry in Hamas-run Gaza has said that the Israeli strikes have so far killed over 8,000 civilians including more than 3,500 children. As Benjamin Netanyahu-led Israel continues to batter Gaza with strikes to “root out Hamas terrorists", the world agencies have highlighted that the number of children affected by the Israel-Gaza war could rise.

UNICEF spokesman James Elder said, "Our gravest fears about the reported numbers of children killed becoming dozens, then hundreds, and ultimately thousands were realised in just a fortnight. The numbers are appalling; reportedly more than 3,450 children killed; staggeringly this rises significantly every day."

"Gaza has become a graveyard for thousands of children. It's a living hell for everyone else."

Also Read | ‘Ripped children to pieces’: Doctors work overtime with dwindling supplies after Gaza hospital attack

‘SHOULD HAVE HAD THEIR LIVES SAVED’

The UNICEF spokesperson said the lives of children in Gaza should have been saved. In the absence of greater humanitarian access into the Gaza Strip, the number of deaths could just be the tip of the iceberg, the UNICEF spokesperson said.

While calling for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire amid the looming mass displacement, the overcrowding, and the damage to water and sanitation infrastructure, the UNICEF spokesperson has also flagged the lack of clean water access to the children.

"Gaza's water production capacity is a mere five percent of its usual daily output. Child deaths -- particularly infants -- to dehydration are a growing threat," he said, adding, "And if there is no ceasefire, no water, no medicine, and no release of abducted children? Then we hurtle towards even greater horrors afflicting innocent children."

Meanwhile, Israel's ambassador in Geneva has said that Hamas was holding 33 children hostage, the youngest nine months old.

(With agency inputs)

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Published: 01 Nov 2023, 09:08 AM IST
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