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Israel targeted 69% of schools sheltering displaced people in Gaza: UN agency

June 23, 2024 at 12:16 pm

A Palestinian boy stands by a shattered window at a UN school sheltering displaced people which was damaged during Israeli bombardment in Khan Yunis on 21 June, 2024 [EYAD BABA/AFP via Getty Images]

The UN agency for Palestinian refugees (UNRWA) said on Sunday that the Israeli army bombed 69% of schools housing displaced people inside the Gaza Strip, Anadolu news agency reported.

In a statement, the agency said that “according to Global Education Cluster, 69% of school buildings where displaced families were seeking shelter have been directly hit or damaged.”

“This blatant disregard of humanitarian law must stop. We need a ceasefire now,” it added.

On Friday, the UNRWA noted that in Gaza, over 76% of schools require reconstruction or major rehabilitation to be operational again, according to the Global Education Cluster.

The Global Education Cluster, established in 2007 by the Inter-Agency Standing Committee, is led globally by UNICEF and the local Child Protection Network. It serves as a joint coordination mechanism among organisations engaged in humanitarian responses within the education sector during instances of internal displacement.

As of June 17, the Israeli war has resulted in the complete destruction of 110 schools and universities, with 321 schools and universities partially damaged. The war has also claimed the lives of over 10,000 male and female students, according to the government media office in Gaza.

Flouting a UN Security Council resolution demanding an immediate ceasefire, Israel has faced international condemnation amid its continued brutal offensive on Gaza since a 7 October, 2023 attack by Hamas.

The Palestinian death toll from relentless Israeli attacks on the Gaza Strip since last October has exceeded 37,400, according to the Ministry of Health in the besieged enclave.

More than 85,600 people have also been injured in the onslaught, the Ministry added.

Over eight months into the Israeli war, vast tracts of Gaza lay in ruins amid a crippling blockade of food, clean water and medicine.

Israel stands accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice (ICJ), which in its latest ruling has ordered Tel Aviv to immediately halt its operation in the southern city of Rafah, where over a million Palestinians had sought refuge from the war before it was invaded on 6 May.

READ: Gaza war deprives 800,000 students of ‘right to education’: Media Office