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Gaza: 12 Palestinians killed in Israeli airstrike on mosque in Gaza

30th Oct 2023
Gaza: 12 Palestinians killed in Israeli airstrike on mosque in Gaza

By Anadolu staff

GAZA, Palestine (AA): At least 12 Palestinians were killed in an Israeli airstrike on the Bilal ibn Rabah Mosque in the central Gaza Strip early on Sunday.

Hamas-affiliated Al-Aqsa TV said on Telegram: “12 Palestinians were martyred in an airstrike targeting the Bilal ibn Rabah Mosque in the Al-Nusairat, central Gaza Strip.”

As the Israeli offensive entered its 23rd day, a relentless series of airstrikes, artillery shelling, and naval bombardments took place late Saturday and Sunday, inflicting more casualties and injuries, according to the Palestinian news agency Wafa.

The airstrikes were concentrated in the northern Gaza Strip, with Israeli aircraft also deploying internationally banned white phosphorus munitions. Simultaneously, airstrikes struck northwestern areas of the Gaza Strip, accompanied by heavy shelling from artillery and naval vessels.

Houses in the town of Jabalia in northern Gaza, the city of Rafah in the south, and the Shuja’iyya neighborhood in eastern Gaza were among the targets of the aerial bombardments.

Continuous Israeli attacks on the Gaza Strip since Oct. 7 had led to the destruction of 47 mosques and damage to three churches, the local government media office said Sunday.

“Israeli raids on the Gaza Strip have caused the destruction of 47 mosques and damaged three churches and 203 schools in addition to 80 government buildings,” the director of the office, Salama Maarouf, said at a press conference.

He said the number of medical personnel killed had reached 116 along with 18 members of rescue teams and civil defense crews and 35 journalists.

Spain’s acting social rights minister on Sunday urged Europe to act urgently against “planned genocide” in Palestine.

Ione Belarra’s remarks came in a video shared on her X account, in which she spoke to reporters during a pro-Palestine protest in Madrid.

“Today we are here accompanying all the decent people of our country and also all those people throughout Europe who want to ask and demand an end once and for all to this planned genocide, this ethnic cleansing of the people of Palestine that is being carried out by the State of Israel,” Belarra said.

The European leaders, including the Spanish, are “not up to the gravity of the circumstances,” she said and stressed: “We do not want to be complicit in this planned genocide and we think that Europe must act urgently. I believe that Europe is going to pay dearly for this hypocrisy.”

She continued: “The public is astonished to see how the whole position of the European Union is subordinated to the interests of the United States and the State of Israel.”

Saying that such a position can change today, the minister called on European countries once again to suspend diplomatic relations with Israel, and apply exemplary economic sanctions against Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and the entire political leadership, as well as an arms embargo.

“Of course, (we should) take Netanyahu to the International Criminal Court to be judged as what he is, a war criminal,” she said and added: “I insist, not with our silence and not with our complicity. We need the European Union to act.”

The Israeli army’s spokesperson, Daniel Hagari, on Saturday announced “expanding its operations,” and moving to the “next phase of our war against Hamas,” which includes ground operations.

According to a statement posted on UNRWA’s social media account X, a memorial ceremony was held to honor the UNRWA employees who lost their lives in the attacks on Gaza.

“Every day is becoming a dark day for the UN and UNRWA as the number of our colleagues killed increases,” the statement added.
The report from the Palestine Red Crescent Society on the evacuation threats to Al-Quds Hospital in Gaza is “deeply concerning,” the WHO chief said on Sunday.

“We reiterate – it’s impossible to evacuate hospitals full of patients without endangering their lives,” Tedros Ghebreyesus said on X.

He added that healthcare must always be protected under International Humanitarian Law.

Earlier, the Palestinian Red Crescent Society said Israel threatened to bomb the medical facility in Gaza and demanded an “immediate evacuation.”

We received “serious threats from the occupation authorities to immediately evacuate Al-Quds Hospital in the Gaza Strip, as it is going to be bombarded,” the humanitarian organization said on X.

The International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) also voiced concern regarding the matter, urging de-escalation.

“I am deeply alarmed to hear that Palestine Red Crescent Society teams at the Al-Quds Hospital have again this morning been told to immediately evacuate,” IFRC Secretary-General Jagan Chapagain said on X.

“I cannot stress this further,” he said and added: “There is an urgent need to de-escalate to protect civilian lives, hospitals and doctors.”

Israel claims Hamas operates beneath hospitals and other civilian structures, and that “in order to dismantle Hamas, we must dismantle their underground tunnels.”

Gaza’s 2.3 million residents are also grappling with shortages of food, water, fuel, and medicine due to Israel’s blockade of the enclave.
United Nations Sunday announced that 59 employees of the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) have been killed in Gaza due to Israeli attacks since Oct. 7.

Israel has heavily bombarded Gaza since Oct. 7 when the Palestinian group Hamas carried out a cross-border attack, killing 1,400 people, and taking many hostages.

The number of Palestinians killed in Israeli attacks on Gaza has risen to 8,005, including 3,342 children, 2,062 women, and 460 elderly, according to the Ministry of Health.

[Photo: Injured people incl children bombed by Israeli attacks taken to Al Aqsa Martyrs Hospital in Deir al Balah, Gaza on 29 10 23.
Photojournalist Ashraf Amra /AA]




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