Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, in a series of cable news appearances, described the Palestinian civilian deaths in Gaza as merely "collateral damage."
This statement comes amidst Israel's ongoing military siege on Gaza, which has seen a significant escalation in violence since October 7.
The Gaza Health Ministry reports that over 11,100 Palestinians, predominantly women and children, have been killed since the intensification of Israeli assaults.
The region faces a dire humanitarian crisis, with millions displaced and trapped under the rubble of destroyed buildings. Key infrastructure like hospitals, including aid workers, journalists, and doctors, have also been targeted.
UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Volker Türk has accused both Israel and Hamas of potential war crimes. He emphasized the necessity to end the Israeli occupation and grant Palestinians the right to self-determination.
Türk highlighted the humanitarian and human rights impact of Israel's extensive bombardment, calling for an immediate end to such warfare methods.
Despite the mounting Palestinian death toll, Netanyahu has dismissed the war crimes accusation as "hogwash." He maintains that Israeli forces are targeting terrorists and not civilians.
The Prime Minister's narrative continues to attribute the responsibility for civilian casualties to Hamas, even as Israel conducts air, sea, and land attacks.
The conflict's intensity is palpable at Gaza's largest hospital, Al Shifa, where thousands are trapped without electricity and medical supplies. Israel's ground forces have been engaged in combat near the hospital, amidst accusations of Hamas militants hiding there - claims denied by both Hamas and hospital staff.
Fuel Shortage and Medical Emergency
Al-Shifa Hospital's last generator ran out of fuel, resulting in the deaths of several patients, including premature babies. Netanyahu claims Israel's readiness to evacuate patients, but Palestinian Health Minister Mai al-Kaila refutes this, accusing Israeli forces of evicting the wounded onto the streets.
Medical Aid for Palestinians, a UK-based humanitarian group, expressed deep concern about the situation, particularly the neonatal intensive care unit at al-Shifa.
The organization also criticized media reporting for not scrutinizing Israel's military statements critically.
In summary, as Israel’s military operation in Gaza continues, the humanitarian crisis worsens, sparking global concerns about the conduct of warfare and the dire consequences for civilians caught in the conflict.