Half of Gaza’s population famished – UN

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Young children take shelter inside Nasser hospital in Khan Younis

A top UN aid person said that many people in Gaza are hungry because of the ongoing fighting.

“The deputy director of the UN World Food Programme, Carl Skau, said that only a small amount of the things they need have been able to get in to the Strip. Nine out of 10 people there can’t eat every day. ”

Mr Skau said it’s very difficult to deliver things in Gaza because of the conditions.

Israel says it needs to keep bombing Gaza to stop Hamas and to bring back Israelis who have been taken as prisoners.

The spokesperson for the Israel Defence Forces said to the BBC that they feel bad when civilians are hurt, but they don’t have any other choice.

He said we are trying our best to get as much as we can into the Gaza Strip.

Herzi Halevi, boss of the IDF, was recorded telling soldiers that the army needs to be more aggressive because “we’re seeing terrorists giving up. “This is a sign that their network is falling apart. ”

Meanwhile, the Biden administration has used a special law to go around Congress and approve the sale of about 14,000 tank bullets worth over $106 million to Israel.

Movement to and from Gaza has been made very difficult since October 7th when Hamas fighters broke through Israel’s heavily guarded perimeter fence. They killed 1,200 people and took 240 hostages.

Israel shut down the borders with Gaza and started bombing the area. This made it hard for people in Gaza to get the help they needed.

The health ministry in Gaza, which is run by Hamas, says that Israel has killed over 17,700 people in their campaign to retaliate, and more than 7,000 of those were children.

Only the Rafah border with Egypt is open, letting some aid get to Gaza. This week Israel said they will open the Kerem Shalom crossing from Israel to Gaza in a few days. They will only allow aid trucks to go through for inspection. The trucks will go to Rafah and then cross into Gaza.

Mr Skau said he was not ready for the fear, the chaos, and the despair he and his WFP team saw during their trip to Gaza this week.

He said they saw a lot of chaos at warehouses and distribution points. Many hungry people were desperate, and the supermarkets had empty shelves. The shelters were too crowded, and the bathrooms were overflowing.

Last month, international pressure and a brief seven-day halt in fighting allowed some much-needed aid to go into the Gaza Strip. But the WFP says that another border crossing is necessary now to meet the demand.

Mr Skau said that in some places, 9 out of 10 families don’t have any food for a whole day and night.

People in Khan Younis, a city in the south of Gaza, are in a very bad situation because Israeli tanks surround their city on two sides.

Dr Ahmed Moghrabi, who leads the plastic surgery and burns unit at Nasser hospital, was very sad as he talked to the BBC about not having enough food.

I have a three-year-old daughter who always asks me for sweets, apples, and fruits. I cannot give it. “I feel like I can’t do anything,” he said.

“We don’t have much food, just rice. Can you believe we only eat once a day. ”

Khan Younis has been hit with a lot of air strikes lately. The boss of Nasser hospital there said his team can’t keep up with all the people who are getting hurt and killed.

Israel says that leaders of Hamas are hiding in Khan Younis, maybe in tunnels underground. They are fighting to destroy the group’s weapons and military power, going from house to house and tunnel to tunnel.

On Saturday, the Palestinian president, Mahmoud Abbas, said that the United States is helping the bad things happening in the war by blocking a UN resolution to stop the fighting in Gaza.

13 out of 15 countries on the Security Council voted for the resolution asking for a ceasefire. The UK didn’t vote and the US was the only country that said no to the resolution.

Mr Abbas, the boss of the Palestinian government, said that he blames Washington for the killing of Palestinian kids, women, and old people in Gaza by Israeli soldiers.

The US ambassador to the UN, Robert Wood, supported the decision to veto and said the resolution was asking for a ceasefire that couldn’t be maintained. This would allow Hamas to continue their actions from October 7.

Benjamin Netanyahu , the leader of Israel, said he was thankful for the US supporting them at the security council.

A temporary halt in fighting for seven days ended a little over a week ago. Hamas let go of 78 people they were holding captive, and in return, Israel released 180 Palestinian prisoners.

Hamas in Gaza is still holding more than 100 hostages.

On Saturday, it was reported that Sahar Baruch, a 25-year-old Israeli who was held hostage, has been killed. His kibbutz and a group of hostages shared this news in a statement.

After the armed group of Hamas showed a video on Friday of the aftermath of a failed mission by the Israeli military to rescue a hostage.

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