Israel-Hamas: Death toll reaches to 16,015 since the war began

GAZA (SW) – At least 16,015 Palestinians have been killed since then, according to Gaza Health Ministry figures, while 1,200 people were killed in Hamas’ incursion into Israel, according to Israeli tallies.

Aid agencies warn that a humanitarian disaster in Gaza is worsening by the hour with most of its 2.3 million people homeless and trapped in a tiny, embattled coastal enclave, with little food, water, medical care, fuel, or secure shelter.

With basic infrastructure devastated, phone and internet services frequently disrupted, and a number of health statisticians having been killed or gone missing, there is increasing concern that Gaza health authorities will be unable to continue keeping an accurate count of the casualty toll.

Since a one-week truce collapsed on Dec. 1, casualty updates that had generally been issued daily have become irregular. The last update from Gaza’s health ministry came on Monday from spokesperson Ashraf Al-Qidra, raising the death toll to 15,899.

Only two ministry piecemeal reports adding to the death toll have been issued, based on the number of bodies brought to two hospitals – 43 on Tuesday, and 73 on Wednesday.

Palestinian Health Minister Mai al-Kaila said on Tuesday that Gaza’s health services were in a “disastrous” state, with over 250 staff killed and at least 30 arrested by Israeli forces.

“Our monitoring suggests that the numbers provided by the Ministry of Health may be under-reporting as they do not include fatalities who did not reach hospitals or may be lost under the rubble,” the U.N. human rights office spokesperson told Reuters.

The number of bodies feared buried under the rubble now reaches into the thousands and much of the Gaza Civil Defense Force’s digging equipment has been destroyed in air strikes, the PA’s health minister al-Kaila said on Tuesday.