Monday 22 January 2018

'Ceasefire' too late for child victims of Gaza conflict - broken or unbroken

Clare Cullen

Clare Cullen

While the fighting rages on between Israel and Gaza, the societal group most affected by the violence are children.

PA reports that Israel and Hamas "have agreed to an unconditional 72-hour humanitarian ceasefire" to begin tomorrow, the US and the United Nations said today.

However, PA News reported at 08.50am that "Gaza officials say Israeli tank fire has killed four Palestinians after the latest ceasefire."

Over 1,400 Gazans have already been "martyrd" - most of them children. The death toll of soldiers stands at 52.

On Tuesday, it was reported that a baby was born by cesarean section three days after her mother, Shaymaa Hussein al Sheikh Ali, was killed in an air strike. This news was widely hailed as a miracle, and the 'worlds youngest orphan' was expected to take five weeks in incubation to recover from a shortage of oxygen in the womb following her mothers death.

Meanwhile on the same day, Gaza's only power plant was 'engulfed in flames'. It had been operating at 20pc due to a previous strike but was destroyed by Israeli tank fire, leaving more than 1.8 million people without power. Gaza's only other source of power is purchased from Israel, but only five out of 10 were operational due to Israeli shelling.

Yesterday, the remaining power lines to Gaza were cut. The same infant born by a "miracle" on Tuesday died when her incubator shut off.

photo 1.PNG

Yesterday it was widely circulated on Twitter that a baby was rescued and breast fed from his "martyrd" mother - a grim glimpse into the needlessness of the cruelty.


A Gazan 16-year-old has gained over 110,000 followers on Twitter for live-tweeting the shell attacks outside her home. Her Vine videos, Instagram posts and tweets provide a terrifying insight into life on the front lines for many Gazan children - and every morning she tweets to let her followers know she "made it" through the night.

Gaza tweet.PNG

On Wednesday, the Abu Hussein school in the Jabaliya refeguee camp was the victim of a 'pre-dawn shelling', hailed as a "new low in litany of horrors" by UN chiefs. 16 people were killed - most of them women and children.

On Monday, ten civilians were killed in a strike on a Gazan park - nine of them children.

The children were playing on a swing at a Shati refugee camp on the outskirt of Gaza when the attack happened. Ayman Sahabani, head of the emergency room at nearby Shifa Hospital confirmed the nine children were under all the age of twelve. 46 more civilians were also injured in the strike.

On the 16th July, four Palestinian boys playing in a coastal area were killed by a rocket strike.

The four boys, who were cousins and ages nine to 11, were killed while playing on a beach off a coastal road west of Gaza City, said Ashraf Al Kedra, a Palestinian doctor.

The boys' uncle, Abdel Kareem Baker, 41, raged at Israel after the attack.

"It's a cold-blooded massacre," he said. "It's a shame they didn't identify them as kids with all of the advanced technology they claim they're using."

Mohammed Zeyara is a Canadian YouTuber who was raised in Gaza. Hehas been posting updates to his 850,000 Facebook fans around the conflict, including the below, which he claims is a photograph of a journalist going to bury a child who had no family members left to do so.

The hasthtag #ICC4Israel is trending on twitter, with many people sharing first-hand insight of the conflict - and it's effect on the civilians and children.

#ICC4Israel is a call by Gazans for Israel to be referred to the International Criminal Court for 'war crimes'.


More than 1,500 people have been killed in the Gaza conflict, many of them civilians. Last week, it was reported that one child was killed an hour over a 48-hour period. Over 6,000 people have been injured and more than 7,000 homes destroyed.

The mother of a Palestinian child reacts following his death at a hospital in Gaza City - ***WARNING - GRAPHIC IMAGES IN GALLERY***
The mother of a Palestinian child reacts following his death at a hospital in Gaza City - ***WARNING - GRAPHIC IMAGES IN GALLERY***
The bodies of three of the four Palestinian children from the Baker family, whom medics said were killed by a shell fired by an Israeli naval gunboat, is carried from the morgue in Gaza City.Photo: REUTERS/Finbarr O'Reilly
A Palestinian child behind the gate of Rafah crossing cries as he tries to cross into
It was all just too much to bear for this little Palestinian girl. As Israel stepped up its offensive in Gaza yesterday, she burst into floods of tears during the funeral of her brother who was killed after an Israeli air strike
A Palestinian child, wounded in an Israeli strike on a compound housing a U.N. school in Beit Hanoun, in the northern Gaza Strip, cries at the emergency room of the Kamal Adwan hospital in Beit Lahiya. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)

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