The UN humanitarian office said Tuesday that over 200,000 Palestinians have been displaced in Gaza due to ongoing Israeli airstrikes. Most are sheltering in UN schools, some already damaged.
The number displaced could rise as attacks and Hamas rocket fire continues. The situation escalated after a Hamas attack on Israeli towns prompted retaliation airstrikes and a blockade of Gaza by Israel.
Death Toll Tops 1,800
More than 1,800 people have been killed in the violence so far, including at least 830 Palestinians and 1,000 Israelis per reports. Israel has also cut water and electricity to Gaza, worsening the humanitarian situation.
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Home to 2.2 million, Gaza has already suffered under a crippling Israeli blockade since 2007. The new displacement crisis exacerbates the territory’s plight.
Seeking Shelter in UN Schools
The UN said over 200,000 of Gaza’s residents have fled their homes in fear of airstrikes or after their houses were destroyed. Most are taking refuge in UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) schools, the UN said.
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At least two UN schools sheltering displaced Palestinians have already been damaged themselves in Israeli attacks. With violence ongoing, the number seeking shelter could continue rising.
Worsening Humanitarian Emergency
The UN warned the mass displacement is worsening Gaza’s humanitarian emergency. The dense territory has dealt with desperate conditions under blockade for years already.
Now, vital facilities like power, water, and medical services are further strained by Israel’s strikes and the flood of newly homeless Palestinians seeking shelter. A solution to the conflict is urgently needed to address this growing crisis.