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Palestinians suffering 'intolerable': Red Cross chief

Palestinians mourn the death of loved ones outside a hospital in Khan Yunis, on December 5, 2023. (AFP)

"The level of human suffering is intolerable, " says Red Cross President Mirjana Spoljaric as Israel has resumed its air and ground strikes on Gaza in full force. 

Spoljaric, who arrived in the besieged territory on Tuesday, called for the protection of civilians whom she said "have no safe place to go in Gaza." 

The Red Cross chief also noted that "with a military siege in place there is also no adequate humanitarian response currently possible."

“The last week provided a small degree of humanitarian respite, a positive glimpse of humanity that raised hopes around the world that a path to reduced suffering could now be found," she said, referring to a week-long ceasefire that came to an end on Friday.

Spoljaric said the purpose of her visit to Gaza is “to advance efforts that alleviate the desperate humanitarian situation.”

“I will convey my deep concern for the plight of civilians and underlie the ICRC’s utmost commitment to doing everything we can to ease their suffering,” she added.

The Red Cross, however, has been under fire for not providing adequate help to Palestinians since Israel launched its brutal war on Gaza on October 7.

Israel's military said on Sunday it had carried out around 10,000 air strikes since the war started. Ever since, the regime has killed nearly 16,000 people, 70 percent of whom were women and children, according to the Gaza health ministry.

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