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UNRWA

  • 129 Palestinians, 3 Israeli soldiers killed; U.S. approves Israeli request for ammunition

    Wednesday saw a particularly deadly day of violence in the Gaza Strip, while diplomatic efforts to reach a ceasefire continued with urgency.  According to officials at the Palestinian Health Ministry, 129 people were killed and more than 200 wounded in Gaza throughout Wednesday. Israel's Operation Protective Edge has killed a total of 1,400 Palestinians and wounded more than 7,500. The high death toll comes after a bloody day on Tuesday, which saw more than 120 people killed by Israeli airstrikes in the Strip. The Israeli army announced that three of its soldiers were killed on Wednesday afternoon, pushing the military…

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  • PHOTOS: Gazans use 'ceasefire' to pick up the pieces

    Photos and text: Anne Paq, Basel Yazouri / Activestills.org Tens of thousands of Palestinians returned to their homes across the Gaza Strip on July 26, after a 40-hour humanitarian ceasefire was agreed to between Israel and Hamas. Over 200,000 Gazans have been displaced since the beginning of Operation Protective Edge, due to Israeli airstrikes across the Strip. The ceasefire came to an end on Sunday morning after rockets exploded in Israeli territory overnight, and Israel's refusal to agree to an extension offered by Hamas. The airstrikes destroyed homes, UN schools and hospitals last week, leaving a trail of devastation and…

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  • Israeli, Hamas war crimes becoming increasingly hard to distinguish

    Both sides are guilty of violating international law but the source of an attack on a Gaza UN school could be a game changer. By Lolita Brayman An attack on a United Nations-run facility in northern Gaza sheltering displaced Palestinians left at least 15 civilians killed and many more wounded on Thursday morning, reports indicate. Israel and Hamas are pointing fingers and negating responsibility for the deadly incident, the circumstances of which remain unclear but are significant in light of the UN Human Rights Council’s recent launch of a commission of inquiry into alleged Israeli war crimes. The Israeli army is…

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  • AP: UN shelter shelled; more than 140,000 displaced

    The United Nations today confirmed "multiple dead and injured" at its shelter in Beit Hanoun, where Gazan families had sought refuge from non-stop Israeli shelling that has killed more than 700 Palestinians, most of them civilians. Chris Gunness, a spokesperson for the UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) for Palestine refugees, said via Twitter that the agency had earlier today passed the shelter's "precise coordinates" to the Israeli military. Fearing an attack, UNRWA had "tried to coordinate with the Israeli army a window for civilians to leave," but "it was never granted," said Gunness. As reported by AP, the attack…

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  • Gaza: Over 100 Palestinians, 13 Israeli soldiers killed in single day

    At least 100 Palestinians, including 66 in the Shujaiyeh neighborhood of Gaza City - of which 17 were reportedly children - were killed today (Sunday) bringing the total death toll to 437. Thirteen Israeli soldiers were killed Sunday in battle in the neighborhood, bringing the number of Israeli fatalities over the course of the operation to 18, not including two civilians who died in rocket attacks. Army sources said seven of the 13 Israeli soldiers were in an armored personnel carrier hit by an anti-tank missile, while others were killed setting up positions inside houses they had taken over. The death toll was the…

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  • Palestinian human rights leader: 'Cast Lead was a joke compared to this'

    LISTEN: Israeli human rights lawyer Michael Sfard speak to Raji Sourani, founder and director of the Palestinian Center for Human Rights, about the ongoing destruction in Shujaiyeh, the use of human shields and the fate of Gaza's civilian population.  By Michael Sfard and Raji Sourani Raji Sourani: Hello Michael Sfard: Raji? This is Michael. Can you speak now? R: Yes, yes. M: So, how was last night? R: Well last night was difficult, the worst in the last two weeks. This is incredible evil. Ambulances weren’t able to reach the areas which were under heavy bombardment by tanks and F16s. And…

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  • PHOTOS: Scenes of devastation from deadliest day in Gaza

    Israel bombards the Gaza City neighborhood of Shujaiyeh, killing at least 66, with the toll expected to rise.  Photos by: Anne Paq and Basel Yazouri/Activestills.org Text by: Noa Yachot [WARNING: This post includes graphic photos.] Israel stepped up its air and ground offensive on the Gaza Strip on Sunday, resulting in the deadliest day since the assault  began on July 8. A total of 87 Palestinians were reported dead, with the toll expected to rise. Thirteen Israeli soldiers were also killed Sunday while fighting inside Gaza. A vast majority of the Palestinian deaths were in Shujaiyeh, a neighborhood in the east…

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  • PHOTOS: Devastation in Damascus Palestinian refugee camp

    After months under siege, humanitarian aid finally reached the Yarmouk Palestinian refugee camp in war-torn Damascus this week. UNRWA on Wednesday released photos of the camp, showing the devastation and desperation that has taken hold there after years of civil war and months under siege. "It is impossible not to be touched by the apocalyptic scenes emerging from the Palestinian refugee camp of Yarmouk in Damascus, besieged and cut off for months," said UNRWA Spokesman Chris Gunness. Late last year, +972 reported on the siege and starvation in and around Yarmouk. Read more here.   Related: After chemical attack, Damascus…

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  • Sentenced to life at birth: What do Palestinian refugees want?

    For more than 66 years, Palestinian refugees have been languishing in squalid conditions across camps in the Middle East. But do all of them agree that a return to Palestine is necessarily the best solution? Through her extensive research, Paula Schmitt finds that while different refugees may have different desires, hopelessness remains everyone's worst enemy.  By Paula Schmitt There’s something almost cruel about asking a Palestinian refugee whether he would accept living peacefully with Israel were he ever allowed to return. It feels like a sadistic exercise: treat a man like a lesser human, deny him a country, a house,…

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  • UNRWA: A quarter-million Palestinians displaced in Syrian civil war thus far

    The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) now estimates that approximately 235,000 Palestinian refugees have been displaced due to the civil war in Syria. In a statement to the press this week, UNRWA reported that on April 26, no fewer than 6,000 Palestinians had been displaced from Ein El Tal, a Palestinian refugee camp some 12 kilometers (7.5 miles) from Aleppo in northern Syria. According to UNRWA: Mortars and small arms were reportedly used, damaging and destroying refugee homes and contributing to dozens of fatalities and injuries, including among Palestinian civilians. In the aftermath of the fighting,…

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  • Five Palestinian children killed in Syria

    The United Nation agency for Palestinian refugees is reporting that three separate incidents in Syria claimed last week the lives of five children. One of the children died in Dera'a and four others in Damascus. According to the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East UNRWA, Mohammad Al-Khateeb (aged 14) was killed on March 15 by a bullet as he was returning home on foot after buying bread from a bakery in his neighborhood in Dera'a. On March 19, Hisham Mahmoud (aged 10) and Farhat Mubarak (aged 11), were killed at the crossroad of Yazour and Safad Streets in Yarmouk, Damascus. They were…

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  • Jerusalem's refugee camp: Abandoned by the state

    Although the Shuafat refugee camp is under the jurisdiction of the Jerusalem Municipality, one look at the lack of basic infrastructure, the sewage running in the streets and the unsafe conditions reveal that it is part of a different world. By Chen Misgav Several weeks ago, during a late Saturday morning, a group of 20 Jewish-Israelis leave their cars at the entrance to an intimidating military checkpoint outside Shuafat refugee camp. We are meeting with A., a representative of the Jerusalem Committee Against the Wall and the Settlements, who will be giving us a tour of the camp. We walk…

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  • 30 Palestinians killed last week in Syria

    Five members of the same family were killed in Yarmouk, along with at least seven other people. Despite the bloodshed, Jordan continues to refuse to allow Palestinians among the Syrian refugees it accepts. The United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) issued a press release on Sunday expressing grave concern over the rising number of Palestinian casualties in the Syrian civil war. According to credible sources, an estimated total of 30 Palestinians were killed in the last week. Twelve of the casualties – including five members of the same family – were from…

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