Israeli-Hamas War Takes a Grim Toll: Over 9,000 Palestinian Lives Lost, Says UN Chief

The Maghazi refugee camp in central Gaza witnessed a devastating tragedy on Saturday night as more than 30 people were killed in an Israeli bombing, according to the Hamas-run health ministry. 

Ashraf Al-Qudra, a spokesperson for the church, stated that the casualties arrived at the al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in the nearby Deir Al-Balah region. 

Additionally, Wafa, the Palestinian news agency, had reported earlier that 51 Palestinians lost their lives and many more were wounded in the bombardment. Hamas, in a statement on Telegram, accused Israel of directly targeting civilian homes and claimed that a significant number of the victims were women and children. 

Mohammed Alaloul, a journalist working for the Turkish Anadolu Agency, revealed that the Israeli airstrike had caused his house to collapse partially, resulting in the tragic deaths of his 13-year-old son, Ahmed, and four-year-old son, Qais. Alaloul’s brother also lost his life, while his wife, mother, and two other children sustained injuries in the attack.

The Israeli military, however, stated that it was investigating whether the Israel Defence Forces had been operating in the area at the time of the bombing. Amidst the ongoing conflict, Israeli units from the 13th Battalion of the Golani Brigade found themselves unexpectedly ambushed by 30 fighters from a Hamas unit emerging from hidden tunnel entrances in northern Gaza.

A fierce battle ensued, with Hamas employing drones, anti-tank missiles, and mortars against Israeli armored personnel carriers. Although Israel’s ground invasion has progressed, it has not been without its challenges. 

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The Reality on the Ground in Gaza

The Maghazi refugee camp in central Gaza witnessed a devastating tragedy on Saturday night as more than 30 people were killed in an Israeli bombing, according to the Hamas-run health ministry.

Ambushes on tanks, troop concentrations, and positions held in bomb-damaged buildings, as well as encounters with anti-tank-guided missiles and mines, have led to a continual stream of Israeli casualties. Meanwhile, questions surrounding the feasibility of achieving war aims and post-conflict consequences remain unresolved.

Notably, within the current conflict, alongside the prevailing sense of solidarity, there is a heated debate surrounding the discrepancy between public rhetoric from Israel’s political and military leaders and the actual reality on the ground. 

The humanitarian situation in Gaza is further exacerbated as the Hamas-run government suspended the evacuation of foreign passport holders to Egypt after Israel denied access to wounded Palestinians seeking treatment in Egyptian hospitals. 

This move by the Israeli government has halted the departure of foreign passport holders until the transportation of wounded individuals through the Rafah crossing to Egypt is allowed, according to an anonymous border official.

An Egyptian security source confirmed that no wounded individuals or foreign passport holders arrived at the Egyptian terminal in Rafah on Saturday due to the suspension caused by the bombing of ambulances en route.

On Friday, the Israeli army claimed to have targeted an ambulance outside Gaza’s largest hospital, al-Shifa, alleging that it was being used by a Hamas terrorist cell. 

The strike resulted in the deaths of at least 15 people, with 60 others wounded, according to Gaza’s health ministry.

The ongoing conflict has inflicted immense suffering on the people of Gaza, with the Maghazi refugee camp becoming another tragic battleground. 

Israel maintains that its target is Hamas, not civilians, and accuses the militants of employing residents as human shields. As the conflict enters its second week, the toll on innocent lives continues to mount, underscoring the urgent need for a peaceful and lasting resolution.

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