World, Middle East

1,800 housing units destroyed in Israel's attacks on Gaza: Minister

74 gov't buildings, 3 mosques also destroyed, 16,800 housing units, 66 schools, 40 mosques damaged, says housing minister

Mohamed Abo Don  | 20.05.2021 - Update : 20.05.2021
1,800 housing units destroyed in Israel's attacks on Gaza: Minister

GAZA CITY, Palestine

At least 1,800 housing units have been demolished in Israel’s ongoing airstrikes on the Gaza Strip, a Palestinian official said on Thursday.

“The number of housing units completely destroyed has reached 1,800, while some 16,800 more housing units have been partially damaged,” Naji Sarhan, minister of public works and housing, said at a news conference in Gaza City.

He said Israel’s assault on the Gaza Strip has created “a difficult humanitarian reality,” with more than 120,000 Palestinians displaced from their homes.

“Five large residential towers in the middle of Gaza City have been completely destroyed. The number of government buildings destroyed has reached 74, including a police headquarters and other service facilities,” Sarhan said.

The minister said 66 schools have been damaged in Israeli bombardment, while three mosques have been destroyed, 40 mosques slightly damaged, and a church has also sustained minor damages.

“Today, we need $350 million to rehabilitate housing facilities that have suffered heavy damage in the repeated Israeli attacks,” Sarhan added.

At least 232 Palestinians have been killed in Israel’s relentless assault on the Gaza Strip since May 10, including 65 children, 39 women, and 17 elderly people.

According to Palestine’s Health Ministry, over 1,700 more people have been injured as Israel continues to pound the besieged Palestinian territory in airstrikes.

Israel launched an offensive on Gaza after Hamas fired rockets in retaliation to days of violent Israeli assaults on Palestinians in occupied East Jerusalem during the holy month of Ramadan.

Israeli police attacked Palestinian worshippers in and around the Al-Aqsa Mosque in the last week of the holy month, while also targeting Palestinians protesting in solidarity with residents of the Sheikh Jarrah neighborhood, who are facing eviction after a controversial Israeli court order.

Israeli forces have killed at least 29 Palestinians, including four children, and injured over 6,300 more in the occupied West Bank over the past few days.

Israel occupied East Jerusalem during the 1967 Arab-Israeli war and annexed the entire city in 1980 – a move that has never been recognized by the international community.

* Bassel Barakat contribtuted to this report from Ankara

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