Some 3,500 children have reportedly been killed and more than 6,800 children reportedly injured during 25 days of “ongoing bombardment” since October 7, the United Nations International Children’s Emergency Fund, UNICEF, said in a statement on Wednesday.
“This cannot become the new normal,” the statement read.
“Children have endured too much already. The killing and captivity of children must stop. Children are not a target,” added the statement, which was released following the second consecutive day of deadly Israeli airstrikes on the Jabalya refugee camp in northern Gaza.
“The scenes of carnage coming out of Jabaliya camp in the Gaza Strip following attacks yesterday and again today are horrific and appalling,” UNICEF announced.
The UN agency said it does not yet have estimates of the death toll of children from the camp. Medical officials on the ground have confirmed hundreds were injured and killed, including many children, following the airstrikes.
UNICEF announced refugee camps are protected under international law and “parties to conflict” have obligations to respect and protect civilians from attack.
“UNICEF reiterates its urgent call to all parties to the conflict for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire, to ensure the protection of all children, and for safe and unimpeded humanitarian access to deliver lifesaving aid at scale across the Gaza Strip, according to International Humanitarian Law,” the statement added.
The Palestinian Ministry of Health has announced at least 9,061 people have been killed since 7 October, including 3,760 children and 2,326 women. At least 32,000 people have been wounded.
Around 2,000 people are still missing in Gaza, including 1,100 children. The vast majority of these people are believed to be dead and buried under rubble.