Only 24 hours left for aid to enter Gaza before ‘catastrophe’: WHO

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The World Health Organization on Monday warned there were only “24 hours of water, electricity and fuel left” in the Gaza Strip before “a real catastrophe” sets in.

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WHO Regional Director for the Eastern Mediterranean Ahmed Al-Mandhari said the bombarded, besieged territory must be allowed to receive convoys of aid, currently stuck at the Rafah border crossing with Egypt.

If assistance does not arrive, doctors will have to “prepare death certificates for their patients,” he told AFP.

Israeli forces kept up their bombardment of Gaza on Monday after diplomatic efforts to arrange a ceasefire to allow foreign passport holders to leave and aid to be brought into the besieged Palestinian enclave failed.

Residents of Hamas-ruled Gaza said overnight air strikes were the heaviest yet as the conflict entered its 10th day with an Israeli ground offensive believed to be imminent.

Bombing carried on through the day, they said, and many buildings were flattened, trapping yet more people under the rubble. Israeli officials issued multiple warnings of Hamas rocket fire into Israel.

Diplomatic efforts have been underway to get aid into the enclave, which has endured unrelenting Israeli bombing since the October 7 attack on Israel by Hamas militants that killed 1,300 people - the bloodiest single day in the state’s 75-year history.

But Israel’s chief military spokesperson, Rear Admiral Daniel Hagari, said there was no Gaza ceasefire and that Israel was continuing its operations.

Israel has imposed a full blockade and is preparing a ground invasion to enter Gaza and destroy Hamas, which has continued to fire rockets at Israel since its brief cross-border assault. On Monday, rocket-warning sirens sounded in several towns in southern Israel, the Israeli military said.

Israeli troops and tanks are already massed on the border.

Authorities in Gaza said at least 2,750 people had so far been killed by the Israeli strikes, a quarter of them children, and nearly 10,000 wounded. A further 1,000 people were missing and believed to be under rubble.

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At least 2,750 killed in Gaza as Israeli strikes intensify ahead of expected invasion

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