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Gaza Health Ministry says it could not count yesterday’s casualties due to communication blackout

November 12, 2023 at 11:00 am

Civil defense teams and civilians conduct a search and rescue operation under the rubbles of demolished buildings following the Israeli attacks in Rafah, Gaza on November 11, 2023. [Abed Rahim Khatib – Anadolu Agency]

The Health Ministry in Gaza said that they could not count casualties in the besieged strip due to the outage of communication and internet, reports Anadolu Agency.

In a statement, Ashraf al-Qudra, the ministry spokesperson, spoke about the successive attacks on Al-Shifa Hospital and its surroundings and said that the situation in the hospital is “beyond catastrophic.”

He said that the hospital has been subjected to Israeli attacks from all sides.

Al-Qudra said that there are dead and injured people lying on the ground at the door of the hospital. “The hospital garden has turned into an open field for Israeli snipers and unmanned aerial vehicles. The Israeli army targets everyone who moves,” he said.

The spokesman said that around 20,000 people are inside the hospital, including displaced families, medical personnel and the injured.

He said that an infant died today in the intensive care unit due to the lack of oxygen and life support equipment, stressing the urgent need for medical supplies.

Earlier, Palestinian Health Minister Mai al-Kaila said that 39 babies in intensive care at the Al-Shifa Hospital are in “life-threatening condition due to the lack of oxygen.”

She said that 20 out of 35 hospitals in Gaza have gone out of service since Oct. 7 due to Israeli attacks and fuel shortages.

Israel has launched relentless air and ground attacks on the Gaza Strip — including hospitals, residences, and houses of worship — since a cross-border attack by the Palestinian resistance group Hamas on Oct. 7.

At least 11,078 Palestinians have been killed, including 4,506 children and 3,027 women.

The Israeli death toll is nearly 1,200, according to official figures.

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