The number of people killed in Gaza has reached 4,651 according to latest reports, amid intensifying Israeli airstrikes, while humanitarians repeated urgent calls for a ceasefire and more aid convoys.
Echoing that message, UN health agency (WHO) chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus issued a new appeal on Monday for “sustained safe passage” for medical essentials and fuel to keep health facilities open.
“Lives depend on these decisions,” he insisted on social networking platform X.
The UN humanitarian affairs coordination office (OCHA) quoted numbers from the Gaza Ministry of Health reporting that 62 per cent of the fatalities in the enclave were women and children.
Over 14,200 people have been injured while more than 1,000 have been reported missing and “are presumed to be trapped or dead under the rubble”, OCHA said.
According to Israeli official sources, about 1,400 people have been killed in Israel, the vast majority in the Hamas attacks on 7 October which triggered the latest conflict.
OCHA said that the reported fatality toll is “over threefold the cumulative number of Israelis killed” since it began recording casualties in 2005.
At least 212 Israeli and foreign nationals are being held captive in Gaza, the Israeli authorities stated. UN Secretary-General António Guterres has repeatedly called upon Hamas to release hostages immediately and unconditionally.
According to several media reports, a new aid convoy entered Gaza from Egypt on Monday through the Rafah border crossing. This was the third such delivery after the crossing opened on Saturday for the first time since the start of the conflict, following intense diplomatic efforts.
A total of 34 trucks with aid provided by the UN and the Egyptian Red Crescent entered the enclave over the weekend. The UN has stressed that to respond to soaring humanitarian needs, at least 100 aid trucks per day are required.
The development comes as UN agency for Palestine refugees (UNRWA) warned on Sunday that it was set to run out of fuel within three days, putting the humanitarian response in Gaza at risk.
UNRWA head Philippe Lazzarini said that without fuel, “there will be no water, no functioning hospitals and bakeries” and that “no fuel will further strangle the children, women and people of Gaza”.