In Occupied Palestine – 16 January 2024

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In Occupied Palestine

Zionism in practice

Israel’s Daily Toll on Palestinian Life, Limb, Liberty and Land

08:00, on 16 January until 08:00, 17 January 2024

[Source of statistics: Palestinian Monitoring Group]

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Gaza Strip

Armed Palestinian Resistance: Palestinian Resistance continued launching dozens of missiles towards the Green Line.

Air strikes: Heavy aerial bombardment on buildings, homes and many facilities.

Attacks: All over Gaza there are air strikes, heavy gunfire, tank and artillery shelling, as well as missiles fired from Israeli forces and military occupation, especially in Khan Yunis. The Israeli Navycontinues to fire missiles, targeting facilities and buildings along the shoreline of the whole of Gaza.

Victims: 163 people killed in Gaza brings the total number of deaths since 7 October to at least 24,448. With another 350 wounded, that has risen to 61,504. Fully accurate statistics are not available due to insecurity menacing hospitals in the Gaza Strip.

OCHA Flash Update #95

Intense Israeli bombardments from air, land, and sea continued across much of the Gaza Strip on 17 January, resulting in further civilian casualties and destruction. The indiscriminate firing of rockets by Palestinian armed groups from Gaza continued. Ground operations and fighting between Israeli forces and Palestinian armed groups were also reported across much of Gaza. On 17 January, the UN Secretary-General repeated his call for an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in Gaza.

Between the afternoons of 16 and 17 January, according to the Ministry of Health (MoH) in Gaza, 163 Palestinians were killed, and another 350 people were injured. Between 7 October 2023 and 12:00 on 17 January 2024, at least 24,448 Palestinians were killed in Gaza and 61,504 Palestinians were injured, according to the MoH.

Between 16 January and 17 January, three Israeli soldiers were reportedly killed in Gaza. Since the start of the ground operation, 191 soldiers have been killed, and 1,152 soldiers have been injured in Gaza, according to the Israeli military.

As of 17 January, telecommunication services in Gaza have remained shut down for the fifth consecutive day, since 12 January. In light of this, new information is limited in this Flash Update. This is the seventh time that communications have stopped working since 7 October. The blackout of telecommunications prevents people in Gaza from accessing lifesaving information or calling for first responders, and impedes other forms of humanitarian response.

As of 15 January, the Deir al Balah water pipeline, with a capacity of close to 17,000 cubic metres of per day, stopped functioning and is in urgent need of repairs. Water, hygiene, and sanitation (WASH) partners have estimated that repairs could take up to four weeks, even if sustained access and the necessary supplies are allowed. Only one of the three water pipelines from Israel into Gaza, located in the south, is currently functioning.

Between 16 and 17 January, the Khan Younis area was reportedly under heavy bombardment with intense fighting on the ground, with many casualties reported. Residential buildings, a cemetery (see Hostilities section for more information) and hospitals are among the civilian objects affected by the fighting.

On 16 January, at about 18:30, the vicinities of Al Amal Hospital in Khan Younis were struck, and serious damages were caused to the building, leading to panic among patients, medical teams, and internally displaced persons (IDPs). No casualties were reported. On 16 January, at about 22:20 and onwards, continuous artillery shelling struck the vicinity of An Nasser Medical Complex, with some munitions falling inside the compound and no casualties reported.

On 17 January, the Jordanian Army quoted in media stated that their field hospital in Khan Younis was heavily damaged and one of its staff members and one patient were injured, amid shelling by Israeli forces in the area. Israeli officials deny this claim and state that Palestinian were firing from within the compound.

On 17 January, 225 truckloads with food, medicine and other supplies entered the Gaza Strip through Rafah and Kerem Shalom crossings. Since the opening of Kerem Shalom crossing, almost 22 per cent of aid trucks have come in through that entry point.

On 17 January, 11 Palestinians, including two children, were killed in two military operations in the Nablus and Tulkarm governorates, in the West Bank. Nine of the Palestinians, including two children, were killed in airstrikes and the other two people were killed with live ammunition. For more information, see the West Bank section.

Hostilities and casualties (Gaza Strip)

The communications shutdown has limited the full reporting of incidents. However, the following are among the deadliest incidents reported between 16 January and 17 January.

On 16 January, throughout the day, 23 Palestinians were reportedly killed as about 12 residential squares were struck in many locations in central, west, southeast, and east of Khan Younis.

On 16 January, at about 13:40, a woman and her daughter were reportedly killed when a group of Palestinians were struck west of Rafah.

On 16 January, in the afternoon, at least 20 bodies of killed Palestinians were reportedly recovered from under the rubble of a destroyed buildings in Al Maghazi and An Nuseirat camp areas.

On 16 January, at about 2:35, eight Palestinians, including two girls, were reportedly killed and dozens were injured when a house was struck and destroyed near Al Abrar Mosque, between Al Haboura camp and Yabna camp, in central Rafah.

On 16 January, at night, seven Palestinian were reportedly killed when a residential building was struck in An Nasmawi neighbourhood, adjacent to the Nasser Medical Complex, west of Khan Younis.

On 17 January, at about 7:00, the vicinity of Tariq bin Ziyad School, west of Khan Younis, was struck. Seven bodies of Palestinian were reportedly recovered after the attack.

On 17 January, at about 7:00, Israeli forces withdrew from the vicinity of Nasser Hospital, in Khan Younis. Initial reports and video footage show that much of the Al Namsawi cemetery was destroyed and graves empty with some corpses reportedly missing.

Displacement (Gaza Strip)

On 17 January, UNRWA Commissioner-General, Philippe Lazzarini, stated: “In the south, around Rafah, makeshift structures of plastic sheeting have mushroomed everywhere, including on the streets, with people trying to protect themselves from the cold and rain. Each one of these flimsy shelters can be home to over 20 people. Rafah is so congested that one can barely drive a car amid the sea of people… In Deir al Balah, in the Middle Area… I heard stories of women foregoing food and water to avoid having to use the unsanitary toilets. Skin diseases and headlice are rife with those affected stigmatized. People were struggling for food and medicine during the day, feeling cold and damp during the night… There is very little information about the north of the Gaza Strip, as access to the area remains highly restricted.”

As of 11 January, according to UNRWA, 1.9 million people, or nearly 85 per cent of Gaza’s population, were estimated to be internally displaced, including many who have been displaced multiple times, as families are forced to move repeatedly in search of safety. Nearly 1.4 million IDPs are sheltering in 154 UNRWA facilities across all five governorates, including 160,000 in the north and Gaza city; facilities far are exceeding their intended capacity. A total of 1.78 million IDPs are receiving assistance from UNRWA. Rafah governorate is the main refuge for those displaced, with over one million people squeezed into an extremely overcrowded space, following the intensification of hostilities in Khan Younis and Deir al Balah and the Israeli military’s evacuation orders. Obtaining an accurate figure of the total number of IDPs remains challenging.

Humanitarian Access (Gaza Strip-Northern Gaza)

In the first two weeks of January, humanitarian agencies planned 29 missions to deliver lifesaving supplies to areas to the north of Wadi Gaza. Only 7 of the 29 (24 per cent) were accomplished, either fully or partially. The remainder of the missions were denied access by the Israeli authorities. Two additional missions, originally coordinated with the Israeli authorities, could not be completed due to the non-viability of allocated routes or excessive delays at checkpoints, which did not allow the missions to succeed during the safe operating windows.

The denials of humanitarian missions’ access to areas north of Wadi Gaza over the first half of January spiked compared with the previous months; in October and December, only 14 per cent (6 out of 43) of missions planned to the north were denied, while the remaining 86 per cent (37 out of 43 missions) were facilitated. These denials prevent a scale-up in humanitarian assistance and add significant cost to the overall response. Additionally, planned missions that are denied access to areas north of Wadi Gaza represent opportunities missed for alternative missions that could be undertaken to other areas of the Gaza Strip. The capacity of humanitarian agencies to operate safely and effectively also remains heavily compromised by the long-term restrictions applied by the Israeli authorities on the import of critical humanitarian equipment into Gaza.

Health care, including attacks (Gaza Strip)

Initial reports on 17 January indicate that a missile reportedly struck the UNRWA health clinic in Ad Daraj, in Gaza city. Further details on the impact of the projectile are yet to be established.

According to WHO, only 15 out of Gaza’s 36 hospitals are functional, albeit partially: nine in the south and six in the north. In Deir al Balah and Khan Younis, three hospitals – Al Aqsa, Nasser, and Gaza European – are at risk of closure due to the issuance of evacuation orders in adjacent areas and the ongoing conduct of hostilities nearby. Hospitals in the north have been offering limited maternity, trauma, and emergency care services. However, they face challenges such as a shortage of medical staff, including specialized surgeons, neurosurgeons, and intensive care staff, as well as a lack of medical supplies, and have an urgent need for fuel, food, and drinking water. The nine partially functional hospitals in the south are operating at three times their capacity, while facing critical shortages of basic supplies and fuel. According to the MoH in Gaza, occupancy rates are reaching 206 per cent in inpatient departments and 250 per cent in intensive care units.

On 17 January, WHO Health Emergency Officer, Sean Casey, said: “We are working on mobilizing additional field hospitals, additional healthcare workers to backfill some of the people who have been displaced, the health workers who themselves are fearing for their lives and to meet the significantly increased burden of care that is created by injuries related to the hostilities and to the atrocious living conditions that people are under now. To summarize what I’ve seen: a rapid deterioration of the health system alongside a rapidly increasing level of humanitarian need and diminishing level of humanitarian access, particularly the areas north of Rafah. Every movement presents risks and logistical challenges.”

Settler Violence

Since 7 October 2023 and as of 17 January 2024, OCHA recorded 431 Israeli settler attacks against Palestinians, resulting in Palestinian casualties (41 incidents), damage to Palestinian-owned property (337 incidents), or both casualties and damage to property (53 incidents). This reflects a daily average of four incidents since 7 October 2023 until 17 January 2024.

One-third of the settler attacks against Palestinians after 7 October 2023 have involved firearms, including shootings and threats of shootings. In nearly half of all recorded incidents after 7 October, Israeli forces were either accompanying or reported to be supporting the attackers.

In 2023, 1,229 incidents involving Israeli settlers in the West Bank, including East Jerusalem (with or without Israeli forces), resulted in Palestinian casualties, property damage or both. Some 913 of these incidents resulted in damage, 163 resulted in casualties and 153 resulted in both. This is the highest number of settler attacks against Palestinians in any given year since OCHA started recording incidents involving settlers in 2006.

Displacement (West Bank)

From 7 October 2023 and as of 17 January 2024, at least 198 Palestinian households comprising 1,208 people, including 586 children, have been displaced amid settler violence and access restrictions. The displaced households are from at least 15 herding/Bedouin communities. More than half of the displacements occurred on 12, 15, and 28 October, affecting seven communities. The displacement toll since 7 October 2023, represents 78 per cent of all displacement reported due to settler violence and access restrictions since 1 January 2023 (1,539 people, including 756 children).

From 7 October 2023 and as of 17 January 2024, 460 Palestinians, including 227 children, have been displaced, following the demolition of their homes, due to lack of Israeli-issued building permits in Area C and East Jerusalem, which are almost impossible to obtain.

A total of 19 homes have been demolished and 95 Palestinians, including 42 children, displaced due to punitive demolitions from 7 October 2023 and as of 17 January 2024. The numbers exceed those reported in the first nine months of the same year, during which 16 homes were punitively demolished and 78 people displaced.

From 7 October 2023 and as of 17 January 2024, 602 Palestinians, including 263 children, have been displaced, following the destruction of 94 homes during other operations carried out by Israeli forces across the West Bank. About 94 per cent of the displacement was reported in the refugee camps of Jenin, and in Nur Shams and Tulkarm, both in Tulkarm. This represents 65 per cent of all displacement reported due to the destruction of homes during Israeli military operations since January 2023 (908 people).

West Bank

[Palestinian Monitoring Group]

Israeli Army attackshome invasions – ambulances and hospitals hampered: Tulkarem – 04:50, Israeli Occupation forces, storming the city as well as the Nour Shams and Tulkarem refugee camps, invaded homes and besieged the Thabet Thabet and Al-Israa Hospitals. Ambulances were searched and prevented from moving and seven people taken prisoner.

Israeli Army attackshome invasions – air strike – 5 killed: Nablus – 01:2506:00, Israeli forces, storming Nablus, invaded homes and launched an air strike from a drone that destroyed a motor vehicle, killing five people on board: Yazan Al-Najmi, his brother Saif, Muhammad Al-Qatawi, Abdullah Abu Shalal and Mahmoud Abu Hamdan.

Israeli Army invasions of refugee camps: Nablus – 01:2506:00, Israeli forces, firing live ammunition, stormed the Balata and Askar refugee camps.

Israeli Army attack – 1 wounded, another beaten: Bethlehem – 15:15, the Israeli Army, firing live ammunition in a raid on Husan village, wounded one resident, Muhammad Thaer Zaoul, and beat up another, Omar Naseem Sabateen.

Home invasions: Nablus – 13:2017:30, Israeli Occupation forces raided Zawata and searched a number of homes.

Home invasions: Bethlehem – 09:50-11:55, the Israeli Army raided the village of Marah Rabah and invaded homes.

Home invasions and pastoral sabotage: Hebron – 09:20, Israeli troops raided and invaded a number of homes, as well as demolishing seven livestock shelters.

Israeli police and settlers’ mosque violation: Jerusalem – 08:00, settler militants, escorted by Israeli police, invaded the Al-Aqsa Mosque compound and molested worshippers.

Israeli Army raid on school 2 students abducted: Jerusalem – 09:10, Israeli Occupation forces raided the Al-Rashidiya School and abducted two of the students.

Israeli Army armed robbery 1 taken prisoner: Hebron – 20:30, Israeli forces seized a motor vehicle belonging to a man, Ayesh Zahida, as he was being taken prisoner.

Israeli Army armed robbery 1 taken prisoner: Hebron – 02:30, in Beit Ummar the Israeli Army seized a motor vehicle belonging to a man, Muhammad Issa Bahr, as he was being taking him prisoner.

Occupation settler violence and robbery pastoral sabotage: Hebron – morning, Israelis, from the Havat Ma’on Occupation settlement outpost, attacked a family at home in the village of Mughayer al-Ubaid, beating-up two people and stealing three sheep.

Raidrubber-coated bullets and stun grenades: Jerusalem – 14:00, Israeli Occupation forces, firing rubber-coated bullets and stun grenades, raided and patrolled Anata.

Raidrubber-coated bullets and stun grenades: Jerusalem – 16:30, Israeli forces, firing rubber-coated bullets and stun grenades, raided and patrolled al-Ram.

Raid3 taken prisoner: Ramallah – dawn, the Israeli Army raided the village of Kharbatha al-Misbah, taking prisoner three people.

Raid2 taken prisoner: Ramallah – 01:00, Israeli troops raided al-Bireh, taking prisoner a woman and a man.

Raid3 taken prisoner: Ramallah – 01:50, the Israeli military raided the village of Yabrud, taking prisoner three people.

Raid4 taken prisoner in refugee camp: Ramallah – 04:15, Israeli soldiers raided the al-Jalazoun refugee camp, taking prisoner four people.

Raid1 taken prisoner: Ramallah – 07:45, Israeli Occupation forces raided Beitunya, taking prisoner one person.

Raid1 taken prisoner: Ramallah – dawn, Israeli forces raided the village of Betello, taking prisoner one person.

Raid1 taken prisoner: Jenin – 19:30, the Israeli Army raided Ya’bad, taking prisoner one person.

Raidrubber-coated bullets and stun grenades fired: Qalqiliya – 13:10-17:20, Israeli troops, firing rubber-coated bullets and stun grenades, raided and patrolled the village of Hajjah.

Raid: Qalqiliya – 23:40-midnight, the Israeli military raided and patrolled Azzun.

Raid1 taken prisoner: Qalqiliya – 01:5507:35, Israeli soldiers raided the city, taking prisoner one person.

Raidstun grenades: Salfit – 17:20, Israeli Occupation forces, firing stun grenades, raided and patrolled Haris village.

Raidstun grenades1 taken prisoner: Salfit – 03:10, Israeli forces, firing stun grenades, again raided and patrolled Haris village, taking prisoner one person.

Raid2 taken prisoner: Jericho – 04:0505:05, the Israeli Army raided the Ein Sultan refugee camp, taking prisoner two people.

Raid1 taken prisoner in refugee camp: Bethlehem – 11:05, Israeli troops raided the Aida refugee camp, taking prisoner one person.

Raid2 taken prisoner: Bethlehem – 14:25, the Israeli military raided the village of Dar Salah, taking prisoner two people.

Raid1 taken prisoner: Bethlehem – 03:1506:45, Israeli soldiers raided Beit Jallah, taking prisoner one person.

Raidstun grenades fired: Bethlehem – 09:50, Israeli Occupation forces, firing stun grenades, raided the village of Marah Rabah.

Raidschool invaded populationcontrol: Bethlehem – Israeli forces, raiding the Boys’ School in the village of Battir, took down the Palestinian flag from the roof and prevented anyone from recovering it.

Raid1 taken prisoner: Hebron – 11:25, the Israeli Army raided the village of Qalqas, taking prisoner one person.

Raidarmed robbery 1 taken prisoner: Hebron – 20:30, Israeli troops raided the city, taking prisoner one person and robbed him of his motor vehicle.

Raidarmed robbery 1 taken prisoner: Hebron – 02:3005:00, the Israeli military raided Beit Ummar, taking prisoner one person, seizing his motor vehicle and vandalising a memorial to President Yasser Arafat.

Raid3 taken prisoner: Hebron – 03:10, Israeli soldiers raided the city, taking prisoner three people.

Raid4 taken prisoner: Hebron – 03:20, Israeli Occupation forces raided Bani Naim, taking prisoner four people.

Raid1 taken prisoner: Hebron – 03:30, Israeli forces raided Yatta, taking prisoner one person.

Raid1 taken prisoner: Hebron – 07:35, the Israeli Army raided Beit Awa, taking prisoner one person.

Raid1 taken prisoner: Hebron – 07:55, Israeli troops raided Dura, taking prisoner one person.

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