Gaza is becoming a “graveyard for children”, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres said on Monday, amplifying demands for a ceasefire in the enclave, where Palestinian health authorities said the death toll from Israeli strikes had exceeded 10,000.
Guterres emphasised that the Israel Defense Forces’ ground operations and ongoing airstrikes are killing innocent civilians, harming hospitals, refugee camps, places of worship, and even UN facilities, including shelters. He emphasised that no one was safe in the current situation.
According to a Reuters journalist on the ground in Gaza, Israel’s recent overnight bombardment, conducted by air, ground, and sea forces, was described as one of the most severe incidents.
The Gaza health ministry’s latest update revealed that at least 10,022 people, including 4,104 children, had tragically lost their lives in the conflict.
“Gaza is turning into a place where the lives of children are cut short too frequently. Reports indicate that hundreds of young girls and boys are being killed or injured daily,” Guterres stated.
Several international organizations have expressed concerns about the overwhelmed state of hospitals, dwindling supplies of food and clean water, and the inadequacy of aid deliveries to the area.
Guterres noted that 89 individuals affiliated with the UN Palestinian refugee agency (UNRWA) were among the casualties. UNRWA itself confirmed that five of its staff members had been killed in the last 24 hours alone.
In an earlier joint statement issued by 18 UN entities, the urgent need for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire was stressed, following a month of bombardment on Gaza. The statement emphasised that enough was enough, and the violence must end immediately.