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U.N. Warns One-Quarter of Gazans Are Starving Amid Israeli Assault and Siege

HeadlineDec 22, 2023

Palestinian officials report 390 people have been killed and more than 700 injured in Israeli strikes on Gaza over the past two days. In one of the latest attacks, an Israeli air raid killed four people, including Bassem Ghaben, the director of the Israeli-controlled Karem Abu Salem border crossing, who’d been working to bring desperately needed aid into Gaza. This comes as the United Nations reports more than a half a million Palestinians are starving amid Israel’s siege and unrelenting bombardment of the Gaza Strip. Arif Hussain is chief economist with the U.N.’s World Food Programme.

Arif Hussain: “In the world right now there are about 130,000 people who are in catastrophic levels of hunger, meaning they are starving. In Gaza, more than half a million. That is four times more. And that is what makes this totally unprecedented.”

On Thursday, Hamas ruled out any more exchanges of captives until Israel agrees to a “full cessation of aggression.” Meanwhile, Israel has for the seventh time severed Gaza’s phone and internet connections.

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