Israeli crimes in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank
Facts and Figures
Killings and injuries
- The Palestinian Ministry of Health reported that as of 25 October more than 6,547 Palestinian civilians, including 2,704 children and 1,292 women, were killed by the Israeli occupation's intentional and widespread targeting of Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip. An average of 339 Palestinians killed per day, or 14 Palestinians per hour, and an average of 1 Palestinian child killed every 15 minutes.
- According to the Ministry of Health, in the past 24 hours alone (as of 18:00 on 25 October), 756 Palestinian civilians, including 344 children, have been killed following intense Israeli airstrikes on civilians. This is the highest number of reported Palestinians killed in a single day in the Gaza Strip since 7 October.
- According to the Ministry of Health, more than 68% of Palestinians killed are children and women.
- The Ministry of Health also reported that over 17,439 Palestinians were injured.
- The Ministry of Health provided that 65% of Palestinians killed and injured this current week were sheltering or residing in the Southern part of the Gaza Strip, the area where the Israeli occupation ordered Palestinian civilians to evacuate to deeming it as "safe".
- The Ministry of Health estimates the number of victims trapped under the rubble to be at least 1,600, including 900 children.
- The total number of those killed and injured in Gaza is not yet comprehensive. Palestinian Civil Defense teams are struggling to reach many areas while rescue and retrieval efforts of victims from under the rubble are becoming nearly impossible due to the continuous and non-stop Israeli airstrikes, severe shortage of fuel to run equipment and vehicles, and the lack of connection to mobile networks. Civil Defense announced yesterday that the last running equipment just ran out of fuel, rendering the rescue efforts impossible.
- Since the beginning of the monstrous Israeli war on the Gaza Strip, more than 50 Palestinian families were completely annihilated and wiped out from the civil registry.
- According to the Ministry of Health, as of 25 October, 149 Palestinian families had lost ten or more of their members, 123 Palestinian families had lost 6 to 9 members, and 416 families had lost two to five of their members.
- UNRWA has reported the killing of 38 of its staff since 7 October by Israeli targeted airstrikes. They include teachers at UNRWA schools, gynecologist, engineers, guards, psychological counselors, and support staff. These figures include only those that UNRWA has been able to confirm so far.
- Since 7 October, Israeli airstrikes killed 34 Civil Defense members and 16 healthcare workers while carrying out their humanitarian missions.
- According to the International Federation of Journalists, as of 26 October, at least 21 Palestinian journalists were targeted and killed in the Gaza Strip, two are still missing or detained by the Israeli occupation forces.
- The death toll of Palestinian civilians in nineteen days is more than double the total number the death toll of Palestinian civilians in the 51 days of war in 2014 (2,251 killed Palestinians), which was regarded as the deadliest Israeli war on the Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip.
- According to OCHA, over 1.4 million people - over half the total population of Gaza have been forcibly displaced, with nearly 629,000 sheltering in 150 UNRWA-designated emergency shelters.121,750 displaced Palestinians are taking shelter in hospitals, churches, and public building, and nearly 79,000 in 70 non-UNRWA schools which none of them is safe from the Israeli airstrikes.
- Overcrowding is a growing concern as UNRWA shelters are hosting about 2.7 times the designed capacity. In the most crowded shelter, in the most severe level of overcrowding, with more than 12 times the designed capacity.
- The numbers have exceeded UNRWA's capacity to assist in any meaningful way, including with space in shelters, food, water or psychological support. The shelters have become overcrowded in addition to very limited supplies of food, hygiene and cleaning supplies and potable water.
- Over 15% of the displaced Palestinians are estimated to have disabilities, yet shelters lack the required medical mattresses and beds, causing ulcers and other medical issues that cannot be treated in unsterilized conditions. Similarly, the food distributed does not meet the needs of those with swallowing difficulties.
- Following the Israeli occupation's orders to over one million Palestinian civilians to evacuate to the southern parts of the Gaza Strip, many international organizations, including the UN Secretary-General and UN independent experts, deemed this not only impossible but also a crime against humanity and a collective punishment. A UN spokesperson called the order "impossible" to achieve "without devastating humanitarian consequences" . ICRC described such an order as incompatible with international humanitarian law.
- It was evidentially indicated that hundreds, and possibly, thousands, of displaced Palestinians are returning to the north of the Gaza Strip, due to continuous bombardments in the southern part, to which they were ordered to evacuate by the Israeli occupation forces, and due to their inability to find adequate shelter. Since 7 October (as of 21:00 on 22 October), 12 displaced Palestinians sheltering at UNRWA schools have been killed and about 180 have been injured.
Destruction of property
- According to OCHA, as of 23 October, the Israeli occupation forces targeted and destroyed 6,179 buildings, 27,781 housing units, and affected more than 150,000 housing units, and entire neighborhoods have been destroyed by carpet bombing.
- The total number of housing units reported as destroyed or damaged accounts for at least 45% of all housing units in the Gaza Strip.
- As of 25 October, OCHA reported that 219 educational facilities, including 29 UNRWA schools have been targeted by Israeli airstrikes, 8 of which were UNRW A emergency shelters, with one of them being directly hit, resulting in the killing of at least 8 displaced Palestinian civilians and 40 others injured. 140 public schools- one of which was completely destroyed, one university building that was severely damaged.
- A total of 41 UNRWA installations have been damaged since 7 October.
- Roads and streets were severely destroyed, obstructing the rescue teams from reaching hundreds of victims, dead and alive, that are still trapped under the rubble of destroyed houses.
- Due to food insecurity, women and children, especially pregnant and lactating women, are at risk of malnutrition, which will negatively affect their immune health, increasing their susceptibility to contracting maternal nutrition-related illnesses such as anemia, preeclampsia, hemorrhage. This increases the risk of death for both mothers and babies.
- Since 21 October, three humanitarian convoys reached Gaza with a total of 54 trucks. UNRWA teams receive those shipments on the Gaza side and help with the storage and distribution in cooperation with other UN agencies. The convoys included some food, drinking water and medicines.
- Aid deliveries entering Gaza have not included fuel. UNRWA, by far the largest humanitarian provider in Gaza, will exhaust its fuel reserves approximately by 25 October.
- Essential resources such as water, food, and medicine continue to be in critical short supply. Due to that, people are consuming saline water with over 3,000 milligrams per litre of salt content from agricultural wells. This poses an immediate health risk, raising hypertension levels, also increasing the risk of diarrhea and cholera. Health partners have detected cases of chicken pox, scabies and diarrhea, attributable to the poor sanitation conditions and consumption of water from unsafe sources.
- For the fourteenth consecutive day (since 11 October), Gaza has been under a full electricity blackout, following Israel's halt of its electricity and fuel supply to Gaza, which in turn triggered the shutdown of Gaza's sole power plant.
- Due to the access restrictions to Gaza's main landfills, solid waste has been accumulating in temporary locations and in the streets, posing health and environmental hazards.
- The World Food Program (WFP) indicated that stocks of essential food commodities within Gaza were sufficient for only 12 days.
- Between the 20 and 25 October, 3 bakeries were forced to shut down due to a lack of fuel, and another 10 bakeries were targeted by the Israeli occupation forces. Only 19 bakeries are still operational up to this day, however, unless fuel is allocated to them, most bakeries will shut over the next few days. As a result, people are struggling to obtain a piece of bread. Long queues are reported in front of bakeries, where people are exposed to airstrikes.
- The electricity blackout has disrupted food security by affecting refrigeration, crop irrigation, and crop incubation devices, consequently harming various livelihoods, including poultry, cattle, fish, and other commodities.
- Damage to main fiber-optic internet lines and related infrastructure during Israeli attacks, compounded by the fuel shortages, have severely impaired connectivity and telecom services, undermining lifesaving operations.
- Access to the sea along Gaza has been prohibited by the Israeli occupation forces, and all fishing activity has ceased since 7 October. The expansion of Israel's perimeter from 300 to 1,000 meters from the border, have barred entry to key agricultural areas which led to reduced crop fields, affecting hundreds of thousands of people harvesting crops.
Targeting hospitals and medical staff
- The Israeli occupation forces have directly targeted hospitals, doctors, medics, and first respondents.
- According to the Ministry of Health, "the health care system has reached the worst stage in its history."
- As of 25 October, the World Health Organization (WHO) had documented 76 attacks on health care affecting 35 health care facilities (including 20 hospitals damaged) and 24 ambulances. Seven hospitals, all in Gaza city and northern Gaza, were forced to shut down due to the damage they sustained, lack of power and supplies and/or evacuation orders.
- According to OCHA, the hospitals in the Gaza Strip are reaching an unprecedented point of devastation due to the influx of injuries combined with severe shortages of essential resources, such as medical supplies, personnel, electricity, water, and fuel. Fuel at the hospitals is being severely rationed and is used to run a selected number of critical facilities. The back-up generators are not designed for continuous operation and are therefore likely to break.
- Since 7 October, over one-third of hospitals in Gaza (12 of 35) and nearly two-thirds of primary health care clinics (46 of 72) have been forced to shut down due to damage from hostilities or lack of fuel, increasing the pressure on the remaining health facilities that are still operational.
- On 23 October, five hospitals erected tents within their compounds to cope with overcrowding. Al-Shifa hospital, the largest in the Gaza Strip, is currently treating more than 5,000 patients, which is significantly over its capacity of 700 patients. Not to mention that around 45,000 displaced Palestinians are currently taking shelter in the hospital.
- 20 hospitals in the Gaza Strip are still receiving evacuation orders from the Israeli occupation forces. The 23 hospitals in Gaza and north Gaza, have the capacity of 2,000 beds (2,000 patients) out of the total number of 3,500 hospital beds in Gaza.
Internationally prohibited weapons
- Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch confirm that the Israeli occupation forces used white phosphorus artillery shells in densely populated civilian areas in Gaza.
- White phosphorous, an internationally prohibited weapon, bums at extremely high temperatures when exposed to air, and can continue to bum inside the flesh. It causes horrific pain and life-changing injuries, and cannot be put out with water.
- The use of white phosphorous ammunition in densely populated areas of Gaza violates the requirement under international humanitarian law that parties to the conflict take all feasible precautions to avoid civilian injury and loss of life.
- Heavy Israeli attacks from air, sea, and land have continued almost uninterrupted across the Gaza Strip since the beginning of the large-scale Israeli aggression. As of 7 October 2023, Israel, the occupying power, has dropped more than 12,000 tons of explosives. An average of 33 tons of explosives were dropped per square kilometer on the Gaza Strip, which is a total area of 365 square kilometer.
West Bank, including East Jerusalem
- According to the Ministry of Health, since 7-25 October 103 Palestinians, including 31 children and two Palestinian detainees in Israeli detention, were killed by the Israeli occupation forces or settlers in the West bank, including East Jerusalem. More than 1,850 injured Palestinians, including at least 160 children, an additional 39 Palestinians have been injured by settlers.
- Of the 103 Palestinians killed in the occupied West Bank, six, including one child, were killed by Israeli settlers.
- Around 28% of injuries were caused by the Israeli occupation's live ammunition. According to OCHA, the number of Palestinian injuries from live ammunition is almost eight times higher than the average of such injuries between 1 January to 7 October 2023.
- According to the Commission of Detainees and Ex-Detainees Affairs, since 7 October, the Israeli occupation forces detained more than 1,460 civilian Palestinians, including children, journalists, and women. Mass arbitrary detention has escalated during the war on Gaza, which is part and parcel of the whole collective punishment policy against the Palestinian people as a whole.
- Since 7 October, the Israeli occupation forces have escalated their persecutory policies and practices against the Palestinians detainees in the illegal Israeli detention centers, taking advantage of the lack of information from and visitation of attorneys.
- The Israeli occupation forces have illegally deprived the detainees of the following measures, as a form of collective punishment: contacting their families and family visits, denial of attorneys visits, deprivation of getting out to the prison's yard, deprivation of using the canteen, confiscation of electrical appliances, reduction of shower periods to 15 minutes for each room, continuous invasions of rooms, accompanied by physical attacks and threats of death.
- Two Palestinian detainees in Israeli detention centers were killed in less than 24 hours. Arafat Yaser Hamdan, 25, was killed two days after he was arrested by the israeli occupation forces. Administrative detainee Omar Hamzeh Daraghmeh, 58, was also killed after being arrested on 9 October 2023. The Commission of Detainees Affairs stated that the "Israeli authorities [are] beginning a systematic assassination process against detainees in its detention centers".
- The Israeli occupation forces have also detained hundreds of Palestinian workers from Gaza, after transferring them by the Israeli occupation from Israel to the West Bank, as a form of collective punishment.
- Since the beginning of the war on Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip, the so-called National Security Minister, Itamar Ben-Gvir, ordered to purchase 10,000 rifles to "equip" the settler "security teams" in the illegal settlements. 4,000 assault rifles have already been secured. The number of distributed weapons is expected to grow further.
- OCHA has recorded over 138 settler attacks against Palestinians civilians from 7 October to 25 October. Of which, 20 attacks involved physical attacks on Palestinians (injuries and killings), 95 attacks involved damage to Palestinian property, 23 settler attacks involved both physical attack and damage to property.
- More than one-third of the settler attacks (48) involved threats with firearms, including shooting, by settlers. Almost half of all attacks (68) involved Israeli occupation forces accompanying or actively supporting Israeli settlers while carrying out the attacks against the Palestinian civilians.
- Affected Palestinians properties by settler attacks included 22 residential structures, 40 agricultural/animal-related structures, 66 vehicles and more than 400 trees and saplings.
- Settler attacks amounts to an average of 8 attacks per day, more than double of the daily average attacks since the beginning of 2023.
- Since 7 October, 82 Palestinian households, comprising of 607 Palestinians, including 112 children, have been displaced from 13 herding communities in Ramallah, Al-Khalil, Bethlehem, Tubas and Nablus Governorates, due to the escalation of settler violence in the occupied West Bank.
- Since 7 October, the World Health Organization has documented 96 attacks against health in the occupied West Bank, affecting 77 ambulances, including 53 attacks hindering the delivery of health care, 53 physical attacks towards health workers, and 17 involving detention of health staff and ambulances by the Israeli occupation forces, and 10 involving militarized search of health assets.
- The genocidal rhetoric against Gaza and the Palestinian civilians in public statements made by senior Israeli officials, in addition to the unlawful and widespread crimes against the Palestinian civilians in the Gaza Strip, amounts to genocide and ethnic cleansing.
- The UN Special Rapporteur on the Occupied Palestinian Territories, Francesca Albanese, has stated that there is a risk of ethnic cleansing of Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, as there is both a declared intent, through the countless statements by Israeli officials wanting to expel Palestinian civilians from the Gaza Strip into the Sinai desert. Also, there is the practice itself, where the Israeli occupation forces are evidently trying to do so, by targeting civilians, essential services, and evacuation orders towards the south. Albanese stated that it "would be the largest instance of ethnic cleansing in the history of this tormented land".
- Indiscriminate attacks against civilians and civilian objects is prohibited under international humanitarian law and amounts to a war crime under the Rome Statute. Civilians are also protected under international humanitarian law by the rule of proportionality, which prohibits attacks against military targets that could cause excessive or disproportionate civilian casualties in relation to the anticipated advantage of the target's destruction.
- Indiscriminately killing civilians with no regards for the principles of distinction, precaution and proportionality is a war crime under the Rome Statute.
- Hospitals are protected under international humanitarian law. The latter prohibits attacks on medical professionals, hospitals, ambulances and clinics.
- Intentional starvation of a civilian population, including by, cutting off power, fuel, and water, and hindering access to food, medicine, and basic services, is a crime against humanity, as well as a form of collective punishment against the civilian population in the Gaza Strip, which is a grave breach of the Fourth Geneva Convention and a war crime under the Rome Statute.
Updated key messages from International Organizations and UN experts in relation to the War on Gaza
- "Without fuel, there will be no water, no functioning hospitals and bakeries. Without fuel, aid will not reach those in desperate need. Without fuel, there will be no humanitarian assistance".
- "Without fuel, we will fail the people of Gaza whose needs are growing by the hour, under our watch. This cannot and should not happen".
World Health Organization (WHO):
- "When fuel runs out, so will hope for thousands of patients."
- WHO reiterates its call for safe passage for the delivery of fuel and health supplies throughout the Gaza Strip.
- WHO calls for a humanitarian ceasefire, and the safe passage of fuel, medical supplies, and humanitarian aid into and across Gaza.
The UN Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory:
- "There is already clear evidence that war crimes may have been committed in Gaza".
- The COI said it was "gravely concerned with Israel's latest attack on Gaza and Israel's announcement of a complete siege on Gaza involving the withholding of water, food, electricity and fuel which will undoubtfully cost civilian lives and constitutes collective punishment."
- "The only path towards ending violence and achieving sustainable peace is through addressing the root causes of the conflict including through ending the illegal occupation of Palestinian territory and recognizing the right of the Palestinian people to self determination".
- Ms. Navi Pillay, Chair of the COI condemned Israeli military attacks, resulting in the deaths of thousands of Palestinian civilians, calling for an immediate ceasefire, she underscored that the Israeli Government must end its 56-year occupation and recognize the Palestinian people's right to self-determination.
UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of Human Rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967:
- "I hope I rendered justice to the Children I interviewed this year. I fear asking if they are still alive".
- "I regret the lack of objectivity of certain media in reporting on Israel and OPT. Professional ethics require media to report impartially facts on the ground, refraining from stocking the flames of war".
International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC):
- "Israeli and Palestinians individuals deprived of liberty in the ongoing armed conflict must be treated humanely at all times, in accordance with applicable international humanitarian law and human rights law. The ICRC must be notified of their whereabouts and granted access to them".
- "Our teams visited hospitals in the northern area of Gaza. The needs are staggering. Supplies are at the limit. Medical teams need reinforcement. Doctors are breaking down. Hospitals face impossible conditions- no power, operations by flash light, no painkillers".
 WHO on X, October 25, 2023.
 The UN Independent International Commission of Inquiry on the Occupied Palestinian Territory, October 10, 2023.
 Ms. Navi Pillay, Chair of the COI, Press conference, October 25, 2023.
 Francesca Albanese, UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of Human Rights in the Palestinian territories occupied since 1967, on X, October 26, 2023.
 Statement by ICRC president Mirjana Spoljaric on the release of two hostages and ICRC's role as a neutral actor, October 20, 2023. https://www.icrc.org/en/document/israel-and-occupied-territories-icrc-helps-release-hostages-gaza
 ICRC on X, October, 25, 2023.