Gaza children dying in Israel's 'targeted starvation campaign': UN experts

Six-year-old Hikmat Badr died from malnutrition and lack of medication as cases of child malnutrition amid ongoing Israeli attacks in Gaza. (Photo/AA)

UN rights experts have accused Israel of carrying out a "targeted starvation campaign" that has resulted in the deaths of children in Gaza.

"We declare that Israel's intentional and targeted starvation campaign against the Palestinian people is a form of genocidal violence and has resulted in famine across all of Gaza," ten independent United Nations experts said in a statement on Tuesday.

The UN has not officially declared a famine in Gaza.

But the experts, including the UN special rapporteur on the right to food, Michael Fakhri, insisted there was no denying that famine was underway.

"Thirty-four Palestinians have died from malnutrition since 7 October, the majority being children," said the experts, who are appointed by the UN Human Rights Council but who do not speak on behalf of the United Nations.

Their statement was immediately slammed by Israel's mission to the UN in Geneva, which charged that "Mr Fakhri, and many so-called 'experts' who joined his statement, are as much accustomed to spreading misinformation, as they are to support Hamas propaganda and shielding the terrorist organisation from scrutiny".

'Inaction is complicity'

The UN experts meanwhile listed three children who had recently died "from malnutrition" after several others were said to have starved to death in northern Gaza earlier this year.

"Fayez Ataya, who was barely six months old, died on 30 May 2024, and 13-year-old Abdulqader Al Serhi died on June 1, 2024, at the al-Aqsa Hospital in Deir al Balah," they said.

Nine-year-old Ahmad Abu Reida died just two days later "in the tent sheltering his displaced family in Al Mawasi, Khan Younis", they said.

"With the death of these children from starvation despite medical treatment in central Gaza, there is no doubt that famine has spread from northern Gaza into central and southern Gaza," they said.

The experts decried that the world had not done more to avert this disaster.

"When a two-month-old baby and 10-year-old Yazan Al Kafarneh died of hunger on 24 February and 4 March, respectively, this confirmed that famine had struck northern Gaza," they said.

"The whole world should have intervened earlier to stop Israel’s genocidal starvation campaign and prevented these deaths."

"Inaction is complicity."

Gaza has been facing a deep humanitarian crisis since the Israeli occupation and its blockage of humanitarian aid.

The UN has been warning for months of a looming famine in Gaza, especially in the north.


Source: TRT