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Israel and Hamas Battle for a City in Gaza, Sparking Another Exodus

Israel and Hamas Battle for a City in Gaza, Sparking Another Exodus


Since the war began, more than 15,000 people have been killed in Gaza, according to the territory’s health officials, and much of the region’s housing stock has been damaged or destroyed. Nearly 1.9 million people, or about 85 percent of the total population of Gaza, have fled their homes, squeezing into an area covering less than one-third of the territory, according to the United Nations.

The war has also put an immense strain on the territory’s battered health care system. A major hospital in Khan Younis, Nasser Hospital, has run out of space and supplies to treat injured patients in its emergency room, said Dr. Mohammad Abu Moussa, a radiologist.

“The wounded come in the dozens, and it’s impossible for us to treat all these victims,” Dr. Abu Moussa said. “It’s not only that we can’t treat them; we can’t even diagnose them.”

No aid has arrived in Khan Younis and the surrounding area because of the fighting, the United Nations said, while areas immediately north of the city have been cut off because of Israeli restrictions on movement on the main roads. It said all access to northern Gaza, including Gaza City, ended when the truce collapsed.

The Biden administration has urged Israel to exercise more restraint and to do more to avoid civilian casualties, but it has refused to criticize Israel’s conduct of the war.

Hoping to ease some of the humanitarian crisis, the United States on Tuesday pledged an additional $21 million for food, shelter, medical care and other necessities in the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, on top of the $100 million that President Biden announced in October.

“Civilians are disproportionately bearing the brunt of the war, and food, water, and fuel remain inadequate, and that is unconscionable,” Samantha Power, the administrator of the U.S. Agency for International Development, said at a news conference on Tuesday, after she arrived in El-Arish, Egypt.

Reporting was contributed by Farnaz Fassihi, Talya Minsberg, Josh Holder, Adam Goldman, Yara Bayoumy and Gaya Gupta.



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