An airstrike by Israeli forces on Sunday morning targeted a United Nations school where Palestinian civilians has sought refuge, killing 10 and wounding 30 more, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health.The victims, many of them children, were taken to the Kuwaiti hospital in Rafah, which was already filled well beyond capacity with the hundreds of people wounded by Israeli attacks in Rafah that began Friday with the bombing of a crowded market during what was supposed to be a humanitarian ceasefire.
The 10 civilians killed in the UN school have been identified as:
- Mohammad Abu Rajal
- Sami Abdullah Qishta’
- Sami Ismail Abu Shaouf
- Ahmad Khaled Abu Harba’
- Mohammad Mosa’ed Qishta’
- Hazem Abdel-Baset Hilal
- Amr Tariq Abu al-Rous
- Ahmad Kamal al-Nihal
- Yousef Akram Skafi
- Tariq Said Abu al-Rous
Jason Burke told the Guardian newspaper, “I’m in Rafah in the south of the Gaza strip at the Rafah Preparatory A Boys school, a UN-run shelter. People here have told me that at around 10.30 this morning there was an explosion just outside the school gates.
“A group of children and some adults were buying sweets and biscuits from hawkers. Seven people were injured and are possibly dead, or seriously injured. We will get more information from the hospital shortly.
“There have been considerable air strikes overnight and this morning. Just outside the school, around eight metres from the school gates there is a deep penetration in the ground, which witnesses say is new. There is blood on the floor which is currently being washed away.
“There are more than 2000 people seeking refuge in this school, many of them from the east of Rafah where there has been very heavy bombing since Friday, with at least 100 people thought to have been killed in the last few days.”
Sunday’s attack on a school serving as a shelter is the third such attack since the Israeli assault on Gaza began July 8th.
An attack on a UN school in Jabalia on Wednesday July 30th that killed 15 people was condemned by the United Nations as ‘atrocious’.
On Thursday, July 24th, an Israeli attack on a school serving as a shelter in Beit Hanoun killed 15, mainly children.
And on Tuesday, July 22nd, a UN School serving as a shelter in al-Maghazi refugee camp was hit. A UN team that came the following day to investigate was also targeted by Israeli forces.
According to the Euro-Mid Observer, which has been tracking statistics of the Israeli invasion, a total of 167 schools have been damaged by Israeli bombardment over the past three weeks, impacting 91,000 students.