A third of the victims who were killed in Israel’s airstrikes on Gaza are children, the Palestinian Minister of Health Mai al-Kaila told Al Arabiya on Monday.
Israeli raids have injured more than 7,000 people across Palestine, she said, adding that it is difficult to determine the exact number of people who were hurt in the attacks.
“We are living in an unparalleled state of emergency,” the minister said.
Palestinian children are in need of urgent psychological support as a result of Israel’s continuous attacks on Gaza and the West Bank, she added.
Israel has been launching several airstrikes on Gaza and areas in the West Bank for the past two days, killing at least 220 people.
The raids are currently ongoing, according to an Al Arabiya correspondent in Palestine who said that dozens of homes are currently being targetted by Israeli aircrafts.
In Gaza alone, the number of deaths from Israeli raids reached 200, with the toll expected to be much higher as rescuers continue to uncover bodies underneath the rubble of destroyed buildings.
Watch: Rescuers in Gaza dig through the rubble of buildings hit by Israeli airstrikes in search for survivors who may be trapped underneath, while some families mourn their relatives killed in the raids. https://t.co/1klQFb0IOA pic.twitter.com/V9PSBLf6ak— Al Arabiya English (@AlArabiya_Eng) May 17, 2021
Gaza is facing a shortage of medics to help treat the injured, the health minister said, adding that the health ministry was looking to increase the number of medical teams in the city.
On Sunday, the London-based children’s charity Save the Children issued a statement saying that three children are injured every hour in Israeli airstrikes on Gaza.
“Almost 60 children have been killed in Gaza in a week. How many more families need to lose loved ones before the international community takes action? Where can children run to when airstrikes rain down on their homes?,” Jason Lee, Save the Children’s Country Director for Gaza, said in the statement.
Critically ill and injured children are also unable to leave the blockaded city for treatment, Save the Children said.
The raids have damaged power lines across the city and fuel supplies – the soul source of power and electricity in the Gaza Strip – are low. Health facilities and civilian infrastructures could soon be left without the power they need to deliver crucial supplies and emergency treatment, the organization said.
The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) on Sunday released a similar statement, condemning the raids and saying Israel’s “bombardment” in Gaza is preventing the ICRC and other organizations from helping civilians injured or affected by the bombings.
“For people in Gaza, access to hospitals and other vital infrastructure has become very complicated because of the incessant airstrikes and major damage to roads and buildings,” Robert Mardini, ICRC’s director-general, said.