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Feb 28, 2024, 9:21am EST
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UN expert, Qatar accuse Israel of deliberately starving Palestinians

Insights from Euronews, CNN, and The New York Times

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FILE PHOTO: Palestinians wait to receive food cooked by a charity kitchen amid shortages of food supplies, amid the ongoing conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas, in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip, January 16, 2024. REUTERS/Ibraheem Abu Mustafa/File Photo
REUTERS/Ibraheem Abu Mustafa/File Photo
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The News

A United Nations rights expert and Qatar have accused Israel of deliberately starving Palestinians in the Gaza Strip, calling for better access for humanitarian aid to enter the enclave.

In an exclusive interview with The Guardian, the U.N. special rapporteur on the right to food Michael Fakhri said Israel was “intentionally depriving people of food,” calling it a war crime. Qatar’s foreign ministry spokesperson Majed Al Ansari also said Israel was facilitating the “deliberate starvation of the Palestinian people.” He called the situation a “catastrophe,” and urged the international community to take a stand against it, the Gulf Times reported.

The U.N. has said that its aid convoys entering Gaza have repeatedly come under fire and were prevented from providing supplies to people in need. “Humanitarian workers have been harassed, intimidated or detained by Israeli forces, and humanitarian infrastructure has been hit,” said the U.N.’s humanitarian team in the enclave.

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Children suffering from malnutrition

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Source:  
Euronews

U.N. officials have said the situation is particularly dire in northern Gaza, where there is limited humanitarian aid and huge areas have been decimated by strikes. Approximately one in six children are suffering from “wasting,” meaning that they are starved and emaciated, a U.N. official told the Security Council on Tuesday. Children are facing “the worst level of child malnutrition anywhere in the world,” the deputy executive director of the World Food Programme said. “If nothing changes, a famine is imminent.” Convoys are being looted for their aid, a sign of the desperation that starving people are facing in Gaza, the official added.

Parents struggle to scrape together food for their children

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Source:  
CNN

The limited food supplies in Gaza has left many parents giving up meals in order to feed their children, CNN reported earlier this month. What little water is available is often polluted and undrinkable, and Palestinians have described eating grass to make up for a lack of available food. “Children are being violent towards each other to get food and water,” a health care worker told the outlet. “I can’t stop my tears from falling when I talk about these things, because it’s very hurtful seeing your kids and other kids hungry.” The worker said that while he used to feed his own children a variety of foods, including seafood and fresh juices, this year they have survived on bread and canned foods, barely managing one meal per day.

‘Rage bubbling up’ around the world over humanitarian disaster

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Source:  
The New York Times

Around the world, anger at the deteriorating conditions in the Gaza Strip is growing — an anger that is largely being directed at the U.S. and Israeli governments, New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman wrote Tuesday. He doesn’t think that “Israelis or the Biden administration fully appreciate the rage that is bubbling up around the world, fueled by social media and TV footage, over the deaths of so many thousands of Palestinian civilians,” many of them children. As a result, nations previously friendly to Israel are souring on their relationship, and Washington will likely face the same ire the longer it finances a war with no clear end. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu “is ready to sacrifice Israel’s hard-won international legitimacy for his personal political needs. He will not hesitate to take Biden down with him.”

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