‘Biggest Victims of Gaza War’ – Majority of 15,000 Children Killed Were Students

Israeli airstrikes on Gaza killed thousands of Palestinian children.(Photo: Mahmoud Ajjour, The Palestine Chronicle)

By Palestine Chronicle Staff  

The Education Ministry said that since the start of the military assault on Gaza, 620,000 students have been deprived of going to schools, and 88,000 students have been deprived of going to universities.

The Palestinian Ministry of Education has said that more than 15,000 children have been killed since the start of Israel’s aggression on the Gaza Strip, the majority of them schoolchildren. This is in addition to 64 students from schools in the West Bank, including Jerusalem.

Meanwhile, the Palestinian Resistance Movement Hamas said innocent children “have been and continue to be direct targets” of Israel’s “terrorism and criminality.”

The statements marked the International Day of Innocent Child Victims of Aggression held on June 4.

The Education Ministry said the children of Gaza are “the biggest victims of the ongoing occupation aggression since October 7,” reported the official Palestinian news agency WAFA.

It highlighted that Israeli occupation forces “destroyed schools and kindergartens and specifically targeted civilians with children, killing them, forcibly abandoning them, arresting them, depriving them of food and health services, and other serious violations,” the report said.

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Psychological Trauma

The Ministry pointed out that since the start of the military assault on Gaza, 620,000 students have been deprived of going to schools, and 88,000 students have been deprived of going to universities, while most of them suffer from psychological trauma and difficult health conditions.

Last month, UNICEF Communication Specialist Tess Ingram said “one child” was “killed or injured every ten minutes” in Gaza, adding that “above anything else, we need a ceasefire. It is the only way to stop the killing and maiming of children.”

The Education Ministry called on international organizations and institutions “defending children and the right to education to put an end to the escalating violations and stop the crimes committed by the occupation against children students.”

It also called for the need to intervene urgently and immediately stop the attack on Gaza, as well as the attacks of the occupation army and illegal Jewish settlers in the occupied West Bank.

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‘Blacklist Israel’ – Hamas

In a statement on Tuesday, Hamas called on the United Nations “to include the (Israeli) occupation in the blacklist of entities committing crimes against children.”

This year’s International Day of Innocent Children Victims of Aggression “comes as the zionist aggression against our Palestinian people continues in the Gaza Strip, the West Bank, and occupied Al-Quds, ongoing for more than seven months,” Hamas stressed.

“During this period, this fascist entity has committed the most heinous crimes and horrific massacres against the Palestinian people, especially innocent children who have been and continue to be direct targets of this Nazi entity’s terrorism and criminality.”

Children in Prison

Hamas highlighted that in Israeli prisons, “more than 200 Palestinian children, most of them school students, are subjected to the most brutal punitive and vengeful policies,” with 20 of them from the Gaza Strip.

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“They suffer from various forms of beatings, harsh interrogations, physical and psychological torture, daily mistreatment, deliberate medical negligence, and are denied visits from family, healthcare teams, and human rights and humanitarian organizations.”

The movement said this day should remind the United Nations “of the suffering and pain of Palestinian children, both within Palestine and in refugee camps and the diaspora,” adding that “It should place a legal, moral, and humanitarian responsibility on them to put an end to the ongoing severe violations and horrific crimes committed by the zionist occupation against Palestinian children.”

‘Silence and Inaction’

Hamas called on the international community and organizations concerned with children’s rights “to assume their political and humanitarian responsibilities towards Palestinian children, to work for the release of those detained in the occupation’s prisons, … to stop and criminalize its aggression and crimes against our people and children, and to support their legitimate rights to freedom and dignified living.”

It slammed what it called “the continued silence, inaction, and international inability to criminalize the occupation’s violations and escalating aggression against children in Palestine.”

Earlier this year, UNICEF spokesman James Elder said “A war against children” was unfolding in the Gaza Strip.“

“UNICEF called this ‘a war against children.’ Normally, in all wars, children are the most vulnerable. Around 20% of casualties are children in wars, but in Gaza, it is close to 40%,” Elder stated.

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Over 36,000 Killed

Currently on trial before the International Court of Justice for genocide against Palestinians, Israel has been waging a devastating war on Gaza since October 7.

According to Gaza’s Ministry of Health, 36,550 Palestinians have been killed, and 82,959 wounded in Israel’s ongoing genocide in the enclave. Moreover, at least 11,000 people are unaccounted for, presumed dead under the rubble of their homes throughout the Strip.

Palestinian and international organizations say that the majority of those killed and wounded are women and children.

The Israeli war has resulted in an acute famine, mostly in northern Gaza, resulting in the death of many Palestinians, mostly children.

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The Israeli aggression has also resulted in the forceful displacement of nearly two million people from all over the Gaza Strip, with the vast majority of the displaced forced into the densely crowded southern city of Rafah near the border with Egypt – in what has become Palestine’s largest mass exodus since the 1948 Nakba.

Israel says that 1,200 soldiers and civilians were killed during the Al-Aqsa Flood Operation on October 7. Israeli media published reports suggesting that many Israelis were killed on that day by ‘friendly fire’.


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