violence in gaza
There have been rockets flying into Israel and strikes on various targets in Gaza. Israelis claim they are defending themselves against the Islamist group Hamas, and that they trying hard to avoid hurting civilians in the process. But many civilians are getting injured and many of them are children.

Among the hundreds who have been killed due to the escalating violence in Gaza and Israel, over 20 children have been killed and many more injured in this past week alone. There have not been any reported deaths in Israel but many Israelis have been forced to run to bomb shelters. Due to the fact that about five million people are within range of the rocket attacks, these airstrikes are putting children under severe physical harm and mental distress.

Al-Shifa hospital, the primary hospital in Gaza, is having trouble fitting all the injured people. There is a low supply of medication and medical supplies. “Gaza is completely missing about 30 percent of essential drugs, while 15 percent of the remainder is expected to be exhausted within days of an Israeli assault,” said Ashraf al-Qedra, Health Ministry spokesman.

Many houses and public buildings have also been reported as destroyed. Although there have been many deaths, armed organizations in the Strip have stated that they will fight to the end. The Gaza Strip is a small coastal strip which is overpopulated right now and enclosed due to the airstrikes, making it difficult for civilians to escape.

There has been dozens of charities urging the violence in Israel and Gaza to stop. A statement was sign by groups that include ActionAid, CARE, Oxfam and Save the Children. Even President Barack Obama has shown concern and has said that the U.S is now prepared to help end hostilities. “ The United States remains prepared to facilitate a cessation of hostilities, including a return to the November 2012 ceasefire agreement,” Obama told Netanyahu in a phone call. Yet, the U.S. government refuses to work or negotiate with Hamas since it is considered a terrorist organization.

-Priscilla Rodarte
Sources: AljazeeraWashington Post, Gulf Today, Electronic Intifada, UNICEF
Photo: Washington Post