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Escalating violence in Occupied Palestinian Territories leads to devastating loss of child lives

Escalating violence in Occupied Palestinian Territories leads to devastating loss of child lives
24 Apr 2024 00:42


Escalating violence has claimed the lives of at least 24 children over the past three days in the Occupied Palestinian Territories, Save the Children said on Monday, noting that "nowhere is safe".

The NGO reported that 21 children were killed by airstrikes in Rafah, while at least three others perished during raids by Israeli forces in the Nur Shams refugee camp in Tulkarm, West Bank.

The violence in Gaza has reached devastating levels, Save the Children warned, with entire families being eradicated, leaving numerous children without any surviving family members. 

In the West Bank, the situation is no less dire. The attacks that began on April 18 in Tulkarm have resulted in the deadliest incident in the governorate in nearly two decades, with at least 14 Palestinians dead, including children.

The Israeli military's use of anti-tank missiles, armoured bulldozers, and live ammunition has not only resulted in casualties but has also led to significant infrastructure damage, the NGO added.

Buildings have been destroyed, and essential services such as electricity and water have been severely disrupted. Residents of Nur Shams reported a complete blackout and dwindling food supplies, with no one allowed to enter or exit the area during the operations. The presence of Israeli drones and armoured vehicles has intensified the already tense atmosphere, it said, adding that the physical and psychological toll on the civilian population, particularly children, is mounting rapidly.

Xavier Joubert, Save the Children's Country Director in the occupied Palestinian Territory, expressed profound concern over the situation. 

"The past few days have been notably deadly in a context already characterised by increasing death and destruction," he said, adding that 2023 has already become the deadliest year on record for Palestinian children in the West Bank, with 38 children killed by September.

Joubert stressed the absence of safe havens in conflict zones like Gaza and Tulkarm, where civilians, including children, find themselves trapped. 

"There is nowhere safe in Gaza. There was also nowhere safe in Tulkarm in the last few days – people weren't allowed to leave," he remarked, underscoring the grave reality faced by those caught in the conflict.

Source: Aletihad - Abu Dhabi
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