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Palestinian death toll in Gaza nears 29,000: ministry

Xinhua | Updated: 2024-02-18 19:32
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People check the rubble of a building destroyed in an Israeli air strike in the southern Gaza Strip city of Rafah, on Feb 16, 2024. [Photo/Xinhua]

GAZA - The Palestinian death toll in the Gaza Strip has risen to 28,985, the Hamas-run health ministry said on Sunday.

In a press statement sent to Xinhua, the ministry said that 68,883 Palestinians have been wounded in the coastal enclave since the outbreak of the Israel-Hamas conflict on Oct 7, 2023.

The Israeli army killed 127 Palestinians and wounded 205 others during the last 24 hours, the ministry added.

It noted that some victims remain under the rubble amid heavy bombardment and a lack of civil defense and ambulance crews.

In addition, the Palestinian Red Crescent Society said that Al-Amal Hospital in the city of Khan Younis in the southern Gaza Strip witnessed several direct attacks from Israeli tanks.

The association said in a press statement that Israeli forces targeted the fourth floor, causing major material damage and setting the eastern side of the hospital on the blaze, which led to a patient being trapped with his companions, and the medical teams were able to evacuate them at very high risk.

The statement indicated that gunfire targeted the hospital's fuel tanks, and the crews were not able to determine the extent of the damage due to the high risk.

Israel has been launching a large-scale offensive against Hamas in the Gaza Strip to retaliate against a Hamas rampage through the southern Israeli border on Oct 7, 2023, during which about 1,200 people were killed and more than 200 were taken hostage.

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