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Gaza children die of hunger as UN, international community fail: Hamas

A Palestinian girl has her arm measured for malnutrition at a medical tent set up by MedGlobal in cooperation with UNICEF, in Rafah, in the southern Gaza Strip, on February 14, 2024. (File photo by Reuters)

The Palestinian resistance movement Hamas has blamed the United Nations and the international community for the death of 13 children in the Gaza Strip from hunger amid Israeli siege and aggression. 

Palestinian medical sources said on Thursday that seven children died because of malnutrition, bringing to 13 the number of children who have lost their lives because of hunger in the northern part of the besieged strip.

The deaths are "a declaration of failure of the international community and the United Nations in carrying out their tasks in protecting children from starvation," Hamas said in a statement on Friday.

The movement also described the deaths as a “dangerous precedent” in the modern era.

"We renew our call on the United Nations and international relief institutions to take urgent action to save children and civilians in the Gaza Strip, especially in the Gaza and North governorates, and not to submit to the dictates of the criminal Zionist occupation," the statement said.

Hamas also called on the international community to help deliver food and medical supplies to Gaza urgently "to avoid the increasing catastrophe of famine.”

Israel launched the genocidal war on Gaza early in October. The Tel Aviv regime has also imposed a “complete siege” on the territory, cutting off fuel, electricity, food and water to the more than two million Palestinians living there.

Gaza health system ‘more than on its knees': WHO

Amid the Israeli-imposed siege on Gaza, the World Health Organization (WHO) warned that the health system in the strip is “more than on its knees.”

"The system in Gaza is on its knees, it's more than on its knees," WHO spokesperson Christian Lindmeier said on Friday, adding "All the lifelines in Gaza have more or less been cut."

The spokesperson noted that desperate Palestinians risk their lives to find food, water and other necessities.

His remarks come as Israeli forces have repeatedly opened fire on Palestinians waiting for humanitarian aid in northern Gaza. The latest incident killed at least 112 people and injured hundreds of others near the al-Nabulsi roundabout in Gaza City on Thursday.

"The food supplies have been cut off deliberately. Let's not forget that," Lindmeier told reporters in Geneva.

On Tuesday, UN officials slammed Israel for “systematically” blocking aid from reaching Gazans, warning that at least one-quarter of the population of Gaza is one step away from famine.

Israel waged its genocidal war on Gaza on October 7 after the Palestinian Hamas resistance group carried out Operation Al-Aqsa Storm against the usurping entity in retaliation for its intensified atrocities against the Palestinian people.

Since the start of the offensive, the Tel Aviv regime has killed 30,228 Palestinians and injured 71,377 others.

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