An Israeli attack on a UN school in Gaza kills at least 20 people, locals say


An Israeli airstrike on a UN school full of hundreds of displaced people in central Gaza has killed more than 20 people, locals say.

The Israeli army said it had carried out an attack on a UN school housing a ‘Hamas complex’.

Local journalists told the BBC that an Israeli warplane fired two rockets at classrooms on the top floor of the school in the Nuseirat refugee camp.

The Hamas media agency said at least 27 people were killed and accused Israel of carrying out a “horrific massacre.”

Ambulances and rescue teams rushed the injured and dead to a nearby hospital.

Images on social media showed destroyed classrooms and dead bodies wrapped in shrouds in a morgue.

“Enough war! We have been displaced dozens of times. They killed our children while they were sleeping,” a woman injured in the attack shouted in a video.

Ismail al-Thawabta, director of the Hamas media office, rejected Israel’s claims that the UN school had hidden a Hamas command post.

“The occupation is using… false, fabricated stories to justify the brutal crime it has committed against dozens of displaced people,” he told Reuters.

The Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) said fighter jets had carried out a “precise attack on a Hamas compound embedded in a UNRWA school in the Nuseirat area.”

The IDF statement said it had “eliminated” Hamas and Islamic Jihad “terrorists” who took part in the October 7 attack on southern Israel, which killed about 1,200 people and took 251 others hostage.

At least 36,580 people have been killed in Gaza since then, according to the Hamas-run Health Ministry.

The IDF said it had taken steps before the airstrike to “reduce the risk of harm to uninvolved civilians.”

Earlier, the Israeli military said it had taken “operational control” of the eastern parts of the Bureij refugee camp and the city of Deir al-Balah in central Gaza after dozens of Palestinians were reportedly killed.

On Wednesday morning, the military said troops, backed by airstrikes, had begun an operation against “terrorists and terrorist infrastructure above and below ground.”

Residents reported heavy bombardments and the charity Doctors Without Borders (MSF) said at least 70 dead people – most of them women and children – had been taken to a local hospital since Tuesday.

Doctors Without Borders said its medical team on the ground described the situation at Deir al-Balah’s al-Aqsa hospital – one of the few remaining functional health facilities in central Gaza – as “apocalyptic.”

The charity said women and children made up the majority of the 70 dead and 300 injured taken to hospital in the past 24 hours, with many patients suffering severe burns, shrapnel, fractures and other traumatic injuries.

“The smell of blood when I walked into the emergency room (this morning) was just overwhelming. People are lying on the ground. People are lying outside… bodies are being brought in white plastic bags. The families are standing over them and praying, ” Medical referee Karin Huster from Doctors Without Borders said this in an audio message.

“It’s just an emotionally overwhelming situation. It’s not possible for anyone to deal with it.”

Map of damage in GazaMap of damage in Gaza


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