Partner press release from Gaza Community Mental Health Program (GCMHP)
Over 66 Palestinians, including 19 children, have been killed and at least 246 injured since the Israeli Occupying Forces (IOF) launched a renewed incursion into the northern Gaza Strip in a large scale operation called « days of penitence ». It is the largest and deadliest offensive in Gaza in more than four years.
IOF, reinforced by over 200 tanks & armored personnel carriers and Apache helicopters, opened fire on the densely heavily populated Jabalya refugee camp and residential area in the village of Bait Lahiya.
In this military operation, IOF have demolished over 75 homes, destroyed large areas of agriculture land & civilian property, torn up roads, and converted schools and a number of houses into military sites. They have cut off the electricity and water supplies rendering about 15,000 people living in the area of the raid without water and electricity for 7 days. Shortage of milk supplies and food is also escalating.
Moreover, the Gaza Strip remains partitioned into three parts after Israeli armored bulldozers sealed off the main coastal road. For more than two weeks, the Gaza Strip is still considered a military zone, where entry and exist is prohibited.
GCMHP warns of the worsening of the health and humanitarian conditions if the IOF continue their operation for weeks as declared.
GCMHP denounces the Israeli military operation in the northern Gaza Strip and the whole OPT and appeals to the entire world to act immediately and rapidly to stop the attacks and prevent further escalation and deterioration of the humanitarian conditions.
GCMHP calls the international human rights organizations, the EU, and the quartet to intervene immediately, and pressure Israel to stop its military actions and respect its obligations, as set by the 4th Geneva Convention, in protecting Palestinian civilians in times of war.