By Press TV Staff
Addressing the UN Security Council last week, World Health Organization (WHO) Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said a child is killed every 10 minutes in the besieged Gaza Strip.
"Hospital corridors crammed with the injured, the sick, the dying. Morgues overflowing. Surgery without anesthesia. Tens of thousands of displaced people sheltering at hospitals," Tedros told the council, pointing to the grave humanitarian catastrophe.
The concern was earlier echoed by UNICEF spokesperson James Elder at a press briefing at the Palais des Nations in Geneva, describing Gaza as a “graveyard for thousands of children.”
“Our gravest fears about the reported numbers of children killed becoming dozens, then hundreds, and ultimately thousands were realized in just a fortnight,” Elder said on October 31.
“Gaza has become a graveyard for thousands of children. It’s a living hell for everyone else.”
Earlier this week, the country director for CARE International in the occupied West Bank and Gaza Strip, also said that almost 70 percent of those killed in Gaza are women and children, repeating what Tedros said that “a child is killed every 10 minutes” in the coastal territory.
The Israeli regime launched its genocidal campaign on Gaza immediately after the Hamas-led Palestinian resistance surprised Tel Aviv and its Western allies with an unprecedented military operation 'Al-Aqsa Storm' (also known as Al-Aqsa Flood) on October 7.
Over the past seven weeks, Israeli warplanes have been indiscriminately pounding the densely populated territory, including hospitals and schools, with the death toll surpassing 13,000 now.
More than 5,500 are believed to be children and over 3,500 are women, with 30,000 more people wounded, according to the Hamas-run health ministry in the Gaza Strip.
Ismail al-Thawabta, director of the media office in Gaza, said the number of missing persons has risen to 6,000, including 4,000 children and women trapped under the rubble of destroyed buildings.
Calls for the ceasefire have so far been dismissed by the Tel Aviv regime, despite world leaders, including UN Secretary-General António Guterres, emphasizing its urgency.
"This war is having a staggering and unacceptable number of civilian casualties, including women and children, every day," the world body chief said in a statement on Sunday.
"This must stop. I reiterate my call for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire."
He expressed “deep shock” over attacks on two UNRWA (United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East) schools in Gaza in less than 24 hours, which killed dozens of people, mostly women and children.
The genocidal campaign of the Israeli regime since Oct. 7 has had a key target – Gazan children.
According to estimates, nearly half of Gaza’s 2.3 million people are aged under 18, which makes the densely populated strip one of the "youngest places" in the world.
More children have been killed in Gaza since October 7 than in all conflicts across the world combined in the past three years, according to Save the Children, a charity that works to improve the lives of children across the world.
The charity said a total of 2,985 children were killed in two dozen war zones throughout last year.
Hospitals in Gaza have been teeming with wounded children while morgues have been filled with corpses. Even the cemeteries have been left without any vacant space amid the Israeli genocide.
Many young and beautiful lives have been tragically cut short. A 13-year-old Gaming YouTuber from Gaza, Awni Eldous, was killed along with his entire family in an Israeli airstrike.
In August last year, Eldous posted a video in which he thanked his subscribers for helping his channel reach 1,000 subscribers and excitedly spoke of his goal of reaching 100,000 subscribers.
Now, weeks after his death, his channel has clocked 1.35 million subscribers.
Three-year-old Julia lost both her parents in an Israeli bombing. The little girl was lucky to survive with minor injuries, but she still does not know the scale of the tragedy that struck her.
Ayah and Abdullah, six-year-old twins, who brought peace to their mother’s heart, were also killed.
“It’s been 17 days now without you. And you are the survivors, not me,” their bereaved mother Asmaa Mughhari wrote in an Instagram post on November 3.
Dania, who is yet to mark her first birthday, lost her father Roshdi Sarraj in an Israeli strike in Gaza.
“She is far too young to be orphaned and I am far too young to be a widow," her mother Shrouq Aila wrote in a poignant, widely-shared letter posted on her Facebook page.
UNICEF Executive Director Catherine Russell, after she visited Gaza last week, admitted that what she “saw and heard” was “devastating”, especially in terms of the crimes against children.
“Many children are missing and believed buried under the rubble of collapsed buildings and homes, the tragic result of the use of explosive weapons in populated areas,” she was quoted as saying.
“A 16-year-old girl told me from her hospital bed that her neighborhood had been bombed. She survived but doctors say she will never be able to walk again.”
The relentless attacks on hospitals in Gaza have also impacted children the most as hospitals in the territory have not only been catering to patients but also to the displaced.
Even children’s hospitals, such as Rantisi, have not been spared by the regime.
In the occupied West Bank, according to the Defence for Children International–Palestine (DCIP), Israeli forces have killed 54 Palestinian children in the past seven weeks, including 38 children in October alone, the highest number of Palestinian children killed in a single month since 1967.
As one social media user noted, nowhere is safe for children in Gaza or the occupied West Bank. Not hospitals, not schools and not even the cemeteries.