Islamic Relief is preparing to provide lifesaving medical supplies and other support to hospitals in Gaza, as well as food supplies to impoverished families, if the situation escalates further.
Recent months have seen some of the deadliest attacks on civilians in the Occupied Palestinian Territory for many years. More Israeli bombing has been reported in Gaza today (10 May), after yesterday’s airstrikes killed at least 13 people including 4 children and other civilians. Palestinian factions fired rockets into Israel following this afternoon’s bombings, with no casualties reported so far.
“This afternoon the bombing started again and I heard intense bombing around the city,” says Muneeb Abu-Ghazaleh, Islamic Relief Country Director in Gaza. “The streets are otherwise eerily empty as people are terrified of what the next hours and days will bring. Banks, businesses and schools are shut and the crossings with Israel are closed so no goods or people are coming in or out.
“We’ve already seen children killed and lose their parents over the past 24 hours and we know from previous escalations that when bombing increases it is overwhelmingly civilians who are killed, injured and forced to flee their homes. In the last major bombing campaign 2 years ago, more than a quarter of all casualties were children and thousands of homes, hospitals, schools and health centres were bombed.
“It’s vital that the international community applies pressure to stop the crisis escalating further. Israeli authorities must ensure that civilians and civilian infrastructure are protected from attack, in accordance with international humanitarian law.”
Islamic Relief condemns all violence against civilians and calls for an end to the decades-long Israeli blockade of Gaza. Cutting the region off from the rest of the world, the blockade has fuelled high levels of poverty and unemployment and has crippled essential services such as healthcare, electricity and water. In Gaza a staggering 1.3 million people need humanitarian aid, with many unable to adequately feed themselves or their children.
Islamic Relief has been working in the Occupied Palestinian Territory since 1997, providing families with essential daily assistance such as food, cash, shelter and clean water. From our office in Gaza we also support schools and hospitals, to help young people build livelihoods, and to assist vulnerable children and widowed mothers.
We continue to closely monitor the situation and, working through our local partners, will provide urgent humanitarian aid as needed. Please support our life-saving work: donate to our Palestine Emergency Appeal now.