Israel kills and wounds dozens of displaced Palestinians in Gaza tent camps

A woman and a girl react following an Israeli strike that hit a tent camp, in Al-Mawasi area, killing dozens. (Photo/Reuters)

Israeli military has targeted tent camps for displaced Palestinians outside Gaza's southern city of Rafah, killing at least 25 people and wounding another 50, according to the Palestinians health officials and emergency workers.

Friday's attack by Israel on displaced Palestinians comes less than a month after an Israeli bombing triggered a deadly fire that tore through a camp for displaced Palestinians in southern Gaza, drawing widespread international outrage — including from some of Israel's closest allies — over the military's expanding invasion into Rafah.

Witnesses whose relatives died in one of the bombardments near a Red Cross field hospital north of Rafah told The Associated Press that Israeli forces fired a second volley that killed people who came out of their tents.

The International Committee of the Red Cross or ICRC said the hospital was flooded with casualties, including 22 dead and 45 wounded, and condemned the firing of "high-caliber projectiles" a few metres from the facility.

Hundreds of people live in tents nearby, including many of the hospital staff, the ICRC said.

According to Ahmed Radwan, a spokesperson for Civil Defense first responders in Rafah, witnesses told rescue workers about Friday's shelling at two locations in a coastal area that has become filled with makeshift tents.

The locations of the attacks provided by the Civil Defense and the Red Cross hospital appear to be just outside an Israeli-designated safe zone on the Mediterranean coast, known as Muwasi.

In its ritualistic statement, Israeli military said the massacre was under review.

'They went to save the women'

Israel has previously bombed locations in the vicinity of the "humanitarian zone" in Muwasi, a rural area with no water or sewage systems where displaced Palestinians have built tent camps in recent months.

With Israel's genocidal war on Gaza now in its 260th day, international criticism is growing over the campaign of systematic destruction in Gaza, at a huge cost in civilian lives.

The top United Nations court has concluded there is a "plausible risk of genocide" in Gaza.

The attack near the Red Cross hospital began with a munition that only made a loud bang and bright flash, said Mona Ashour, who lost her husband after he went to investigate what was happening.

"We were in our tent, and they hit with a 'sound bomb' near the Red Cross tents, and then my husband came out at the first sound," Ashour said, holding back tears while clutching a young girl outside Nasser Hospital in nearby Khan Younis.

"And then they hit with the second one, which was a little closer to the entrance of the Red Cross," she said.

Hasan al-Najjar said his sons were killed helping people who panicked after the first strike.

"My two sons went after they heard the women and children screaming," he said at the hospital.

"They went to save the women, and they struck with the second projectile, and my sons were martyred. They struck the place twice."

The hospital's location is known to all parties in the conflict and marked with the Red Cross emblem, the ICRC noted on Friday.

The 60-bed field hospital was opened in mid-May to provide emergency surgeries, obstetric, pediatric and outpatient care, according to a news release at the time, which shows white tents covering an area about the size of a football field.

'A difficult and brutal day'

Israel is pushing ahead with its invasion of Rafah, where over a million Palestinians had sought refuge from Israeli brutalities elsewhere.

Most have now fled the city, but the United Nations says no place in Gaza is safe and humanitarian conditions are dire as families shelter in tents and cramped apartments without adequate food, water, or medical supplies.

Elsewhere, Civil Defense teams in the northern Gaza recovered the bodies of five people who were killed in an Israeli air strike that hit two apartments in Gaza City, and several others were wounded.

An air strike earlier on Friday hit a municipal garage in the city and killed five Palestinians.

Fadel Naeem, the orthopedic chief at al-Ahli hospital, said the bodies of 30 people were brought there on Friday, calling it "a difficult and brutal day in Gaza City."

Meanwhile, the Israeli army said on Friday that two soldiers were killed in combat in central Gaza. No information was given about the circumstances of the deaths of the two, both men in their 20s. Three other Israeli soldiers were severely wounded, the army said.

Since October last year, Israel has killed at least 37,431 Palestinians — mostly women, children and infants –– and wounded 85,653, with 10,000+ feared buried under the debris of bombed homes.

More than 9,500 Palestinians have been abducted by Tel Aviv in occupied West Bank and besieged Gaza compared to 116 Israelis who have been held in Gaza by Hamas and other Palestinian resistance fighters.


Source: TRT