Over 2,200 martyrs were killed during Israel’s offensive against the people of the Gaza Strip last summer. According to a new report from the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights (PCHR), 75.7 per cent of those killed in the war were civilians, including 530 children, making up 24 per cent. Just under 15 per cent of those killed were women.
The overwhelming majority of the 10,895 wounded in the Israeli assault were also civilians. Of these, 30.03 per cent were children, and 19.4 per cent were women.
The other statistics of the war are just as staggering. Israel made 8,210 separate attacks on the Gaza Strip, launched 15,736 rockets from gunboats and fired 36,718 shells. Israeli aircraft and artillery destroyed 17,132 homes, 2,465 of them completely. In the final days of the war, fighter jets destroyed three residential towers in Gaza City, housing hundreds of families.
In addition, the Israelis targeted 48 charities, which provided services to over 200,000 people. Direct and indirect losses sustained by the Palestinian economy are estimated at $3.6 billion. Nine water treatment plants were bombed, as were 18 electrical facilities, 19 financial and banking institutions, 372 industrial and commercial institutions, 55 fishing boats, 10 hospitals, 19 health centres and 36 ambulances. Of the 222 schools attacked, 141 were government schools, 76 were run by UNRWA and five were private institutions. Six universities were also targeted, along with an electricity generating plant.
The difficult conditions under which the Palestinians are still living, a year after the attack, have driven them to criticise the delays in the reconstruction of the infrastructure by international donors and the Palestinian Authority. Promises to rebuild the destroyed homes have not been fulfilled apart from that made by Qatar to build 1,000 housing units. It is now coordinating with the Israelis and Palestinians to get the required construction material.
However, this will not end the crisis, as a number of families still remain without proper shelter and are living in tents. Many industrial facilities and schools are closed down because they require renovation and reconstruction.