THE United Nation says Israel’s indiscriminate strikes on the Gaza Strip and incessant evacuation orders have left displaced Palestinians with ‘no safe place’ to go.
The world body’s humanitarian team leader stationed in Gaza says there is no space for displaced Palestinians, likening the situation to a ‘human chessboard,’ as thousands of people have been displaced more than once.
‘People are heading south with mattresses and all of their belongings in vans and in trucks and in cars in order to try and find somewhere safe,’ Gemma Connell said during her visit to Deir al-Balah in central Gaza.
Connell noted that many are left without refuge in Rafah due to the extreme congestion.
‘There’s so little space left here in Rafah that people just don’t know where they will go, and it really feels like people being moved around a human chessboard because there’s an evacuation order somewhere.
‘People flee that area into another area. But they’re not safe there,’ she said.
The UN official added that Israeli strikes have spared no areas in the besieged strip, hitting even those places which are not under ‘an evacuation order’.
Referring to the tragic death of a nine-year-old boy named Ahmed in Al-Aqsa Hospital in Deir al-Balah, which was a supposed safe area, she said: ‘He was not in an area under an evacuation order – he was in an area that was supposed to be safe.
‘There is no safe place in Gaza.’
Israel launched the war on Gaza on October 7th after the Palestinian resistance movement Hamas waged the surprise Operation Al-Aqsa Storm against the occupying entity in response to the Israeli regime’s decades-long campaign of bloodletting and devastation against the Palestinians.
Since the start of the offensive, the Tel Aviv regime has killed at least 20,674 Palestinians and injured more than 54,536 others.
Thousands more are also missing and presumed dead under the rubble in Gaza, which is under ‘complete siege’ by Israel.
- The United Nations special rapporteur on Palestine says the international community’s silence on Israeli crimes against the Palestinians has allowed the occupying regime to commit genocide in Gaza, likening the situation in the besieged Strip to massacres in other parts of the world such as Srebrenica and Rwanda.
‘It is not that different from other massacres of civilians if you look closer. Genocide is a process, not a single act. It must be prevented but in Gaza – as in Srebrenica and Rwanda before – the world is just letting it happen,’ Francesca Albanese said on X, formerly known as Twitter, on Monday.
The Srebrenica genocide occurred in July 1995 when more than 8,000 Bosnian Muslims were killed in and around the town of Srebrenica during the Bosnian War, while the Rwanda massacre took place in 1994 when nearly one million people were slaughtered.
Albanese’s comments came in response to a post that included a UN press release on unlawful Israeli killings in Gaza City, which ‘raises alarm about the possible commission of a war crime.’
The UN press release was referring to an incident that took place on December 19 when Israeli forces raided a building in the al-Remal neighbourhood in Gaza City where three related families were sheltering and shot and killed 11 Palestinian men in front of their families. They then put all the women and children in a room and threw a grenade into it.
The comments were made a day after Israel strikes on central Gaza’s al-Maghazi refugee camp killed scores of Palestinians on Christmas.
- New revelations show that an Israeli general killed settlers during Operation Al-Aqsa Storm – launched by Gaza-based resistance fighters against the regime – and then lied about the incident.
The Israeli Keshet 12 television channel has recently released previously unseen footage of an Israeli tank firing at a civilian home in Kibbutz Be’eri, which lies just a few miles east of the Gaza Strip, on October 7th.
The new evidence shows that the Israeli commander on the scene, identified as Brigadier General Barak Hiram, lied to an Israeli journalist about what happened in the settlement that day.
This amounts to an attempted cover-up by a senior military officer, with media complicity.
But far from being held in any way accountable, Hiram is soon set to take up his new role as commander of the Gaza Division, the Israeli army brigade that suffered a humiliating defeat from Palestinian forces on October 7th.
In an interview with Ilana Dayan, the host of Keshet 12’s investigative programme Uvda on October 26, Hiram gave a false account of the efforts to rescue settlers in Be’eri.
He also fabricated atrocity propaganda, claiming that Palestinian fighters had tied up and killed 10 civilians in the kibbutz.
Hiram’s interview with Dayan was broadcast more than 10 days after Yasmin Porat gave her own testimony to Israeli public radio.
Porat was among 15 settlers held by Palestinian fighters in the house shot at by an Israeli tank seen in the new video.
In her October 15 interview with the Israeli radio station, Porat described how she and her partner Tal Katz had been at the Supernova rave, when rocket fire from Gaza began early in the morning of October 7th.
The couple got in their car and headed to Be’eri, where they knocked on the door of kibbutz residents Adi and Hadas Dagan.
They hid with the Dagans until Palestinian fighters found them and took them to another nearby house, where more civilians were being held by several dozen Hamas fighters.
At Pessi Cohen’s house, according to Porat, the Palestinian fighters treated the dozen-plus Israeli settlers ‘humanely’, and assured them they would not come to any harm.
The Palestinians provided them with water and allowed them outside onto the lawn to escape the heat.
According to Porat, the fighters wanted Israeli authorities, who they thought would already be massing in the area, to grant them safe passage back to Gaza.
‘We were outside and suddenly there was a volley of bullets at us from the (Israeli unit) YAMAM. We all started running to find cover,’ Porat told Keshet 12.
Amid the gun battle that ensued, one Palestinian commander, later identified as Hasan Hamduna, negotiated his exit with the Israeli forces. The troops instructed him to strip and come outside with Porat.
As they came out, Porat called on the Israeli soldiers to stop firing, which they did. Then she saw several kibbutz residents lying on the ground.
Asked if Israeli forces may have killed them, Porat replied, ‘undoubtedly’.
‘They eliminated everyone, including the hostages. Because there was very, very heavy crossfire,’ Porat said.
‘I was freed at approximately 5.30pm. The fighting apparently ended at 8.30pm After insane crossfire, two tank shells were shot into the house.’
Among those killed by the tank shells were Adi Dagan and Porat’s partner. Hadas Dagan was injured but survived.
In another interview last month, Porat revealed that, according to Hadas Dagan, the Israeli tank shelling had also killed 12-year-old Israeli girl Liel Hatsroni.
Earlier this month, Hadas Dagan gave her first interview, confirming key parts of Porat’s account.
Meanwhile, pro-Palestinian activists have described American journalist and news anchor Dana Bash, host of Inside Politics and co-anchor of State of the Union on CNN television news network, as the channel’s top anti-Palestinian propagandist who has lied repeatedly about Israeli deaths.
They maintain that she has, time and again, pushed false information to her viewers, including misinformation about how many Israeli settlers lost their lives on October 7th.
Bash has commented on the ‘brutal massacre’ of ‘1,200 Israeli civilians’.
She has not used such terminology for the thousands of Palestinian civilians bombed to death in their homes across the Gaza Strip, or the many Palestinians shot dead in the streets by Israeli occupation forces.
Neither Bash nor CNN has corrected her false claim that 1,200 Israeli settlers were killed that day.
Pro-Palestinian activists point out that Bash isn’t ignorant as she knows the facts about Israeli soldiers also being killed.
They argue that the inflation of the Israeli settler death total – and dropping of any reference to soldiers killed – is merely intended to make Americans more accepting of the carnage that Israel is directing at Palestinians in Gaza.
Israel’s genocidal war against Palestinians in the besieged Gaza Strip has so far killed at least 20,674 people, most of them women and children. Another 54,536 individuals have been wounded.
The Tel Aviv regime has imposed a ‘complete siege’ on the territory, cutting off fuel, electricity, food and water to the more than two million Palestinians living there.