Deadly Strike At UN School In Gaza

gazaAt least 10 people have been killed in a strike near a UN-run school housing Palestinians displaced by the Gaza conflict, medics say.

The attack hit the entrance of the facility in Rafah, where thousands of Palestinians are said to be sheltering.

The Israeli military has not commented but has been carrying out renewed strikes in Gaza.

Gaza health officials say 30 people have died yesterday, while militants continue to fire rockets into Israel.

The latest exchanges came after Israel’s military said that an officer it feared had been captured had now been confirmed dead. Hadar Goldin went missing on Friday near Rafah.

Confirmation of 2nd Lt Goldin’s death means 66 Israelis have now died in the fighting, all but two of them soldiers. A Thai worker in Israel also died.

The latest official figures from Gaza’s health ministry say that 1,740 Palestinians have been killed and 9,080 injured since the conflict began more than three weeks ago.

The UN warned that a “health disaster of widespread proportions” is unfolding in Gaza, with medical services facing collapse.

The Israeli shelling of the Jabaliya UN shelter last week, which killed 16 people, drew widespread international condemnation. In the latest attack, eyewitnesses said a missile struck as people queued for food.

At least 30 people were also hurt, Palestinian officials said. Images showed injured children being carried away.

Robert Turner, director of operations for the UN Palestinian refugee agency in Gaza, said: “The locations of all of these installations have been passed to the Israeli military multiple times. They know where these shelters are. How this continues to happen, I have no idea.”

Yesterday, Israel said its forces were withdrawing from some areas of Gaza to a “temporary security strip” to reassess operations.

Reports said the military was close to completing its main aim of destroying tunnels used by militants to infiltrate Israel.

Israel Defense Forces spokesman Lt Col Peter Lerner told Agence France-Presse: “We are redeploying within the Gaza Strip and taking out other different positions… so it won’t be the same type of ground operation… It’s changing gear but it’s still ongoing.”

However, PM Benjamin Netanyahu warned Israel would continue its offensive, saying it would “do whatever it must do to protect its people”.

Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum said the group would “continue to resist until we achieve our goals”.

Delegations from Hamas, which controls Gaza, and Islamic Jihad arrived in Cairo on Sunday for talks with Egyptian and US officials over a possible truce.

However, Israel has said it will not attend the talks.

Chris Gunness, from the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (Unrwa), told the BBC that a “health disaster of widespread proportions is rapidly unfolding in Gaza, with medical services on the verge of collapse”.

He said: “Critical supplies of medicines and disposables are almost depleted and the damage and destruction of power supplies has left hospitals dependent on unreliable generators.” — BBC

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