9 UN staff members killed in Gaza


The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestinian refugees (UNRWA) says nine of its staff members have been killed in the Israeli offensive against the Gaza Strip.

The UNRWA said in a statement that the violence is devastating Gaza for the third time in six years and that the body’s staff along with other people are in the line of fire.

The UN body’s director, Robert Turner, called the loss of the staff as a tragedy that cannot be forgotten.

“Consistently from the beginning, we called on all parties of the conflict to respect the neutrality and viability of our installations, to use the proper precautions, distinctions and proportionality when dealing with military targets near the installations,” Turner said.

“The locations of all of these installations have been passed to the Israeli military multiple times, they know where these shelters are. How this continues to happen, I don’t understand it,” he added.

On Sunday, Israeli forces struck a UN-run school in the southern city of Rafah, killing at least 10 Palestinians and injuring dozens others. The school was sheltering some 3,000 Palestinian refugees who had fled Israel’s relentless attacks in the blockaded enclave.

More than 1,822 people, including 400 children, have been killed and over 9,400 injured since July 8, when Israel began its offensive against the Gaza Strip.

While the Israeli military says three Israeli civilians and 64 soldiers have been killed in the conflict, Palestinian resistance movement Hamas puts the fatalities at more than 150.