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Gaza toll surges to 17,487 as Israeli onslaught continues: Health Ministry

December 8, 2023 at 3:33 pm

Relatives of Palestinians died in Israeli attacks, mourn as they take the bodies from the Nasser Hospital morgue ahead of the funeral prayer in Khan Yunis, Gaza on December 7, 2023 [Belal Khaled/Anadolu Agency]

The number of Palestinians killed by Israel’s onslaught in the Gaza Strip has risen to 17,487, with over 46,480 injured, the Health Ministry in the besieged enclave announced on Friday, Anadolu Agency reports.

Ministry spokesman, Ashraf Al-Qudra, said at a press conference that 350 were killed and 558 injured in the past several hours alone, while many other victims remain under the rubble.

Al-Qudra also said that 70 per cent of victims from the Israeli ground and air attacks were women and children, while the Israeli army still holds 36 detained medical staff, including Mohammad Abu Salmiya, Director-General of Al-Shifa, the largest hospital in the Gaza Strip, who was arrested on 23 November.

Describing the health situation in southern Gaza as catastrophic, Al-Qudra said all hospitals in the area were running out of space to treat patients, with the bed occupancy at operational hospitals at 262 per cent.

The spokesman had said, Thursday, that medical teams were facing difficult circumstances at Al-Shifa, which Israeli forces seized control over last month, and urged support from international organisations to help revive Gaza’s health sector.

Israel resumed its military offensive on the Gaza Strip on 1 December after the end of a week-long humanitarian pause with Hamas.

The Israeli death toll in the Hamas attack stood at 1,200, while 138 hostages are still held by the Palestinian group in Gaza, according to official figures.

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