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’50 killed as Israel fires on Gazans rushing to aid trucks’

A Gaza emergency doctor said Thursday that Israeli forces shot dead at least 50 people who rushed towards trucks loaded with humanitarian aid for Gaza…

A Gaza emergency doctor said Thursday that Israeli forces shot dead at least 50 people who rushed towards trucks loaded with humanitarian aid for Gaza City residents.

“The number of martyrs rose to at least 50… and more than 120 were injured, including women and children, as a result of the occupation’s shooting” on the crowd in Gaza City, Amjad Aliwa, director of the emergency department of Al-Shifa hospital, said in a statement.

The Israeli army said it was “checking” reports on the incident, while the United Nations’ Humanitarian Office OCHA said it was “familiar with the reports”.

The health ministry in Gaza meanwhile said at least 70 people had been killed and another 280 injured in the same incident.

A witness told AFP the incident occurred at the Nabulsi roundabout in the western part of Gaza City when thousands of people rushed towards the trucks.

“Trucks full of aid came too close to some army tanks that were in the area and the crowd, thousands of people, just stormed the trucks,” the witness said, declining to be named for safety reasons.

“The soldiers fired at the crowd as people came too close to the tanks.”

The UN estimates that 2.2 million people, the vast majority of Gaza’s population, are threatened with famine, particularly in the north where destruction, fighting and looting make the delivery of food almost impossible.

According to the UN agency for Palestinian refugees, UNRWA, just over 2,300 aid trucks entered the Gaza Strip in February, down by around 50 per cent compared to January.

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