Heavy urban combat in Gaza’s largest cities has left 350 dead in 24 hours, with the rest struggling to survive in shrinking refugee areas. Over 20 people were killed in apartments there, taking the Palestinian death toll since October 7 to 17,177. The UN aid chief deplored the precarious state of affairs in Gaza, stating that there is no humanitarian operation in southern Gaza that can be called by that name anymore. Hamas’ media office stated that Gaza’s north was in a state of famine due to the drying-up of basic food products.

The pace of military assault in southern Gaza is a repeat of the assault in northern Gaza, according to OCH A head Martin Griffiths. He described the aid operation in Gaza as erratic, undependable, and not sustainable. There are promising signs that the Kerem Shalom crossing from Israel into northern Gaza may open soon, which would be the first miracle seen for some weeks and boost the logistical process and base of a humanitarian operation.

Israeli rights group B’Tselem has said that the minimal amount of aid allowed into the territory is tantamount to deliberately starving the population. The head of medical charity Doctors Without Borders (MSF) said that Gaza faces a catastrophe extending far beyond a humanitarian crisis, describing the situation in the densely populated enclave as chaotic.

In southern Gaza’s largest city, Khan Younis, residents reported several Israeli air strikes and non-stop tank fire in the city’s east. Health officials said three people were killed there on Thursday. Ambulances and relatives rushed the wounded, including women and children, into the city’s Nasser hospital, but even the floor space inside was already full.

Those who escape violence face an increasingly desperate struggle to survive.

By Malik

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