Health ministry in Gaza says Israel kills 20 waiting for aid

Eyewitness says tanks started firing shells at people waiting for humanitarian aid at the Kuwait roundabout in Gaza

By AFP

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Injured people receive treatment in Gaza City's Al Shifa hospital, following a reported  Israeli strike, that killed at least 20 and wounded more than 150 as they waited for humanitarian aid. — AFP
Injured people receive treatment in Gaza City's Al Shifa hospital, following a reported Israeli strike, that killed at least 20 and wounded more than 150 as they waited for humanitarian aid. — AFP

Published: Thu 25 Jan 2024, 10:46 PM

The health ministry in Hamas-run Gaza said Israeli forces had on Thursday killed 20 people waiting for humanitarian aid to be distributed on the outskirts of Gaza City.

"The Israeli occupation committed a new massacre against thousands of hungry mouths who were waiting for humanitarian aid at the Kuwait roundabout in Gaza, claiming 20 martyrs and 150 wounded," said ministry spokesman Ashraf Al Qudra.

In a separate statement, Hamas claimed the incident amounted to a "horrific war crime".

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"Zionist forces deliberately and directly bombarded a gathering of citizens who were waiting to receive aid," it said.

Palestinian militant group Islamic Jihad said they were killed by "artillery shells and missiles", a claim AFP was unable to verify independently.

The Israeli army did not immediately respond to an AFP request for comment.

Witnesses interviewed by AFP said they had been targeted by Israeli forces.

"People were going to get food and flour as they had nothing to eat. Suddenly, tanks appeared and started firing shells at the people, who were cut into pieces," Abu Ata Basal, the uncle of one of the injured, told AFP.

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"We were heading to get flour, and they shelled us four times, and some people were martyred and injured," said Mohammed Al Rifi, who was injured in his hand and leg.

The casualties were brought to Al-Shifa hospital in Gaza City, where bodies were seen lying on the floor, an AFP journalist said.

Crowds of people gathered around the injured with pools of blood collecting on the floor.

Israeli attacks have killed at least 25,700 people, about 70 per cent of them women and children.


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