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PCOM October 15, 2023

Operation Al-Aqsa Flood “Taufan” Daily Report (9)

Escalating Humanitarian Crisis in Gaza: A Desperate Call for Aid Amidst Relentless Israeli Attacks

Israeli military aircraft and artillery continue intensive strikes on the Gaza Strip for the ninth consecutive day. The martyrs from the retaliatory strikes carried out by the Israeli occupying forces on the besieged Gaza Strip have risen to 2,329 Palestinians, with 9,042 wounded, including over 700 children. This comes amid a worsening humanitarian crisis due to Israel’s continuous targeting and the imposition of a stifling blockade, which has cut off water, electricity, and food for approximately two million people in Gaza. Gaza’s health ministry spokesperson, Ashraf al-Qedra, reported that the past 24 hours were a perilous period since the commencement of Israel’s bombardment, with over 300 Palestinian martyrs. The ministry also revealed that, since October 7, 47 Palestinian families, totalling 500 individuals, including many children and infants, have been tragically wiped out due to Israeli airstrikes.

Al-Qedra characterized the ongoing events as a war of destruction, carried out against Gaza while the world kept watching in silence. Al Qedra, however, remains steadfast in the face of Israel’s threats to evacuate hospitals, asserting that their moral obligation compels them to continue their essential work. He also emphasized the importance of retaining the Jordan field hospital in Gaza and underscored the dire circumstances, where 70% of Palestinians are denied access to UNRWA services.  In response, the Gaza Ministry of Health vehemently calls for the immediate opening of a secure corridor to facilitate the delivery of aid, medical supplies, and fuel to the Gaza Strip. He also urged the international community to intervene and expedite the evacuation of the wounded and sick through a safe corridor for treatment outside the Gaza Strip.

Amidst the ongoing aggression in Gaza, a dire situation is unfolding as hospitals, already operating at full capacity, grapple with the overwhelming influx of bodies. Traditional burial practices have become nearly impossible due to relentless Israeli airstrikes that are demolishing homes and inflicting mass casualties upon the Palestinian people. The number of martyrs, primarily civilians, including women and children, is rising rapidly, a result of the intense bombardment of residential structures and the targeting of those seeking refuge after fleeing their homes. As a consequence, cemeteries are overwhelmed, and the journey to reach burial sites is fraught with the constant threat of airstrikes.

Additionally, Euro-Med Monitor, a human rights organization, has documented that Israel is claiming the lives of an average of 14 Palestinians every hour in Gaza. Furthermore, since October 7, Israel has unleashed devastation equivalent to a quarter of a nuclear bomb on Gaza. Gaza is one of the most densely populated areas globally, with 2.3 million Palestinians, including half of whom are children, residing in a compact region of approximately 139 square miles. The impact of Israel’s attacks extends to the destruction of 2,650 residential buildings, 65 government structures, and 18 mosques, as reported by Euro-Med Monitor. Moreover, these assaults have caused extensive damage to around 70,000 residential units, 71 schools, 145 industrial facilities, 61 media offices, and multiple historic churches and mosques.

Furthermore, the representative of the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) for Palestine, Dominic Allen, expressed that the situation for the 50,000 pregnant women in Gaza is a distressing ordeal, as the healthcare system in the region teeters on the brink of collapse. In an interview with CNN, Allen described their circumstances as a “nightmare,” and he noted that these women are grappling with unimaginable difficulties. Among the 50,000 expectant mothers, approximately 5,000 are expected to give birth next month, some of whom may encounter complications. Allen went on to illustrate the daunting challenges they face, envisioning the experience of navigating the final stages of pregnancy, with possible medical issues, while lacking essential resources such as clothing, hygiene, and support. Moreover, uncertainty looms over what the next day, hour, or minute may hold for both these mothers and their unborn children.

A delegation from the Islamic Resistance Movement “Hamas,” led by the Head of the Political Bureau, Ismail Haniyeh, held discussions on the latest developments in Gaza with the Iranian Foreign Minister, Hossein Amir-Abdollahian, and a high-level Iranian delegation in the Qatari capital, Doha. Hamas, in a statement reported by Anadolu Agency on Sunday, indicated that the two delegations agreed to continue their collaboration to achieve the goals of the resistance and the entire Palestinian people. Haniyeh elaborated on the motives that led to the “Al-Aqsa Flood” battle, especially the Israeli occupation’s behaviour towards Al-Quds and Masjid Al-Aqsa, its attempts to Judaize and divide the area, and its policies of massacres, assassinations, and settlement activities in the West Bank.

Haniyeh also informed the Iranian delegation about the daily crimes against prisoners in Israeli jails, their ongoing suffering, the continuous blockade of Gaza for 16 years, and the denial of all political rights to the Palestinian people, emphasizing that “after this battle, there will be a new era in the Palestinian cause and resistance, fundamentally altering the status quo.” The Iranian Foreign Minister, in turn, briefed Haniyeh and the Hamas delegation on the outcomes of his regional tour and his meetings and contacts with officials from regional and international parties to halt the attacks on Gaza. He emphasized Tehran’s unwavering support for the Palestinian cause, the Palestinian people, their resistance, and their steadfastness.

On Sunday, both Morocco and Tunisia saw significant demonstrations in solidarity with Gaza, denouncing the Israeli occupation’s aggression. In Morocco, a massive rally was held in Rabat under the theme “Moroccan People with Al-Aqsa Flood and Against Normalization.” Tens of thousands of Moroccans expressed their strong condemnation of Israel’s attacks on Gaza, raising Palestinian and Moroccan flags, and displaying images of Al-Aqsa Mosque. Similar demonstrations took place in Tunisia, and earlier, Tunisia announced sending a military aircraft loaded with approximately 12 tons of medical supplies for Palestinians in Gaza. The solidarity protests and aid shipments aimed to support Gaza amid the ongoing Israeli aggressions.

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