Israel-Hamas Conflict Escalates: Death Toll Crosses 6,000

As the Israel-Hamas conflict continued for a 17th consecutive day on Monday, the death toll on the two sides has increased to more than 6,000, with tens of thousands others injured or forced to displace from their homes as a result of the raging violence.

In its latest update, the Gaza-based Health Ministry said that as intense Israeli airstrikes continued to bombard the besieged enclave throughout the night, an additional 266 Palestinians have been killed in the past 24 hours, which increased the cumulative fatality toll to 4,651.

Of the total victims, there were at least 1,873 children and 1,023 women, the Ministry said.

Gaza hospital
Bodies seen inside the Gaza hospital which killed at least 500 after an alleged Israel airstrike X

Currently, more than 1,000 people Palestinians have been reported missing or are presumed to be trapped or dead under the rubble, while the number of injured persons has shot up to 14,245, it added.

The reported fatality toll in Gaza since the conflict began on October 7 is more than double the total number of death (2,251) during the 50-day escalation of hostilities in 2014, according to UN figures.

Meanwhile, Israeli authorities have said that about 1,400 Israelis and foreign nationals have been killed in in the Jewish nation. Israeli media reported that, as of October 22, the names of 767 of these fatalities have been released. Of those whose ages have been provided, 27 are children.

Attack on Gaza Hospital
Attack on Gaza Hospital, Israel denies, says misfire by Hamas IANS

According to the Israeli authorities, at least 212 people are currently held captive in Gaza, including Israelis and foreign nationals.

On Sunday, one Israeli soldier was reportedly shot and killed on the Gaza side of the perimeter fence.

The Israeli military has said that since the start of hostilities, there had been 550 failed shootings of rockets fired by Palestinian armed groups towards Israel, which fell short in Gaza, killing a number of Palestinians.

In the West Bank, the number of Palestinians killed by Israeli forces or settlers since October 7 has increased to 91, including 27 children. At least 1,734 people have been injured.

Israel Palestine
Israeli police at the attack Twitter

As a result of the violence, the cumulative number of internally displaced persons in Gaza is estimated at over 1.4 million, including nearly 580,000 people staying in 150 UN Relief Works Agency (UNRWA) designated emergency shelters, 101,500 sheltering in hospitals, churches and other public buildings, and nearly 71,000 in schools.

On Sunday, the Rafah crossing between Gaza and Egypt opened for the second consecutive day, allowing the entry of 14 trucks carrying food, water and medical supplies.

But the aid deliveries entering Gaza have not included fuel, with the UNRWA saying that it will exhaust its fuel reserves within the next three days.

(With inputs from IANS)