Palestinians inspect the rubble as smoke rises at a destroyed area following Israeli air strikes in Gaza City, 25 October 2023 (issued 26 october 2023). EFE-EPA/MOHAMMED SABER

UN efforts continue in Gaza amid lack of fuel, intensified attacks

Gaza, Oct 26 (EFE).- The United Nations’ humanitarian efforts continued in Gaza, especially in shelters for displaced people, despite a rapid depletion of fuel and increased bombings, which on Wednesday resulted in a record 756 deaths.

In its daily report on the situation in Gaza, the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs said that the highest single day death toll since the start of hostilities between Israeli forces and Palestinian groups earlier in the month was recorded on Wednesday.

The UN reported that 6,547 people died in the strip as a result of increased hostilities, including 2,704 children.

Over 629,000 internally displaced people are housed in schools run by the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA), where they are being provided with food, medicine, and support, the UN said in its daily report.

Other activities include the distribution of food and cash to displaced people, the supply of emergency fuel to health facilities, psychosocial support, and awareness campaigns to prevent accidents caused by unexploded explosives in the streets.

The 6,547 deaths in Gaza, claimed by the Ministry of Health of the Hamas government, included Palestinians killed in clashes with Israeli security forces in the West Bank.

On Wednesday, the death toll in the West Bank crossed 100, which included 31 children.

The number of trucks with humanitarian aid that have been able to enter Gaza since the weekend through the Rafah crossing, adjacent to Egypt, has risen to 62.

However, they are still not authorized to transport fuel, which is necessary for essential services on the territory.

The United Nations, however, indicated on Thursday that access to drinking water in Gaza temporarily improved in evacuation areas in the south of the strip, such as Rafah and Khan Younis, thanks to the use of emergency fuel to power key purification facilities.

Families in the area have been able to use about 30 liters per person a day, an increase from an average of three liters per day in the previous days.

International standards recommend 15 liters of water per day for consumption, cooking, and hygiene.

The United Nations reported that Israel on Wednesday ordered the evacuation of neighborhoods in southern Gaza, the theoretical evacuation zone, affecting some 40,000 people who had to move to areas in the west, closer to the coast, with hardly any accommodation capacity.

About 45 percent of residential buildings throughout Gaza suffered damage of some kind, the daily report said.

Among them, more than 16,000 homes have been destroyed and 11,000 have been left uninhabitable, according to Gaza’s Ministry of Public Works and Housing.

Many of the 1.4 million displaced people in Gaza, or almost two-thirds of the strip’s population were reduced to having just one meal a day, according to the UN.

The UN also reported the death of another UNRWA worker in the last 24 hours, taking the total number of its staff killed in the conflict to 38 since Oct.7. EFE