Saturday, May 25, 2024

485 Palestinians killed by Israel in West Bank since start of Gaza war: Health Ministry

At least 485 Palestinians have been killed and 4,900 others injured in attacks by the Israeli army and illegal settlers in the occupied West Bank since last October, the Health Ministry has announced.

A ministry statement said more than 340 were reported on health care facilities and workers in the occupied territory during the same period.

The ministry accused Israel of “deliberately obstructing” health care services for Palestinians in the West Bank.

“This policy constitutes a flagrant violation of international humanitarian law and exacerbates the suffering of civilians,” it added.

The ministry noted Israeli restrictions on movement in the West Bank “have exacerbated the humanitarian crisis and limited the population’s access to basic health care.”

Parallel to its brutal onslaught on the Gaza Strip since Oct 7, 2023 following a Hamas attack, the Israeli army has escalated raids and arrests in the West Bank, including the occupied East Jerusalem.

The destructive offensive on Gaza has resulted in nearly 34,100 deaths, most of them children and women, along with massive destruction and famine that has killed children and the elderly, according to Palestinian and international data.

Israel continues its war despite a UN Security Council resolution calling for an immediate cease-fire. Tel Aviv is also facing charges of “genocide” before the International Court of Justice.

UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Tor Wennesland has said he is “gravely concerned by heightened violence across the occupied West Bank”.

In a post on X, Wennesland called for avoiding “further escalation” and said “attacks on civilians must stop, including settler violence”.

“As the war in Gaza continues and regional instability mounts, West Bank stability is essential to keep alive prospects for peace,” the United Nations coordinator added.

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