A Deadly Airstrike, and Gazans at the Breaking Point
An airstrike that Israel said was targeting Hamas militants caused widespread damage in a densely populated neighborhood of Gaza on Tuesday. Hamas and hospital officials said numerous people were killed and wounded, as world leaders warned that the territory’s civilian population was at a breaking point.
The strike left the largest of Gaza’s eight refugee camps in chaos, and in its aftermath, distraught residents could be seen milling about the newly cratered terrain, which was strewn with shards of concrete. A photograph published by Reuters showed a Red Crescent ambulance on a street and more than 30 white sheets wrapped around what appeared to be bodies lying on the ground.
Hamas, the armed group that controls Gaza, and local doctors said hundreds of people had been wounded or killed at the Jabaliya refugee camp. Independent verification of the claim was not possible, but Israel itself described the strike as a “wide-scale” attack.
A nearby hospital was quickly overrun with patients. Dr. Marwan Sultan, medical director of the Indonesian Hospital, said many were women and children, and that dozens of others had been killed.
“We are receiving civilians,” Dr. Sultan said. “They should stop this war, this attack against civilians living in their homes. This is simply genocide, what’s happening now.”
The Israeli military said that its fighter jets had been targeting Hamas militants, among them Ibrahim Biari, a commander it described as a central figure behind the Hamas-led massacres that killed more than 1,400 people in Israel on Oct, 7. He and “a large number of terrorists who were with Biari were killed,” it said. The military claimed that an “underground terror infrastructure” — Hamas has built and extensive network of tunnels under the territory — had collapsed.
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