Gaza: Israeli airstrike at school complex near Khan Younis leaves 25 dead

Israeli airstrike at school complex in Gaza leaves 25 dead
Palestinians in Khan Younis on the move after the latest Israeli evacuation orders. Around nine in 10 Gazans have been displaced at least once since the war began. Photo Courtesy:  UNRWA

At least 25 people were killed after Israel carried out an airstrike at a school complex housing displaced people near Khan Younis, media reports said.

In a statement, the Palestinian Ministry of Health in Gaza was quoted as saying by CNN that Israel targeted “the gate of a school housing displaced people in the town of Abasan, east of the city of Khan Younis,” calling it “a heinous massacre against displaced citizens”.

In the past four days, this is the fourth time an airstrike occurred on or near the schools which are housing displaced people.

A further 53 people were injured, including some who have “serious and critical cases”, the ministry added. The death toll is expected to increase as casualties are still being transferred to Nasser Hospital in Khan Younis, the ministry was quoted as saying by CNN.

In Gaza, overwhelmed hospitals, soaring temperatures, hunger and a lack of even basic sanitation present an ever more deadly threat to a population under constant attack, UN humanitarians warned on Tuesday.

Briefing journalists in Geneva, UN’s World Health Organization (WHO) spokesperson Tarik Jasarevic said that according to the enclave’s health authorities, 34 people have died of malnutrition and dehydration amid ongoing Israeli bombardment, sparked by Hamas-led terror attacks on 7 October.

“In [northern Gaza’s] Kamal Adwan hospital alone, 60 cases of severe acute malnutrition were detected last week,” the WHO spokesperson told journalists.

Easy prey for disease

“Malnutrition is definitely one of the factors that reduces the immunity, especially of the vulnerable population, elderly and children, who then can’t really cope with any disease, any pathogen that they can get,” Jasarevic said, describing a “vicious circle of not having access to enough food, to clean water, to clean sanitation, not having access to basic health services”.

Jasarevic paid tribute to the dedication of health workers who have returned to their facilities once they feel secure enough, to try and get vital services running again. Out of Gaza’s 36 hospitals, only 13 are “partially functioning”, he said.