The number of displaced people in Gaza has reached 1.5 million, according to a senior UN humanitarian official on Friday.
“The number of displaced in Gaza stands now at 1.5 million, with more than 690,000 sheltering in UNWRA facilities, and other places people hope are safe, including hospitals, churches, and schools,” Lynn Hastings, UN assistant secretary-general, humanitarian coordinator in the Occupied Palestinian Territory, said.
Speaking at a press briefing, she emphasized the challenging situation, stating, “The reality is, nowhere is truly safe.”
Close to 9,000 people in Gaza have been killed and more than 22,000 injured, she also said, citing the Ministry of Health in Gaza.
“More than two-thirds of those are estimated to be women and children,” she added.
Hastings also said that the cost of meeting the needs of the entire population of Gaza and 500,000 people in the occupied West Bank until the end of the year is estimated to be $1.2 billion.
UN Humanitarian Affairs Coordinator Martin Griffiths said there has been “some progress” on allowing more fuel in through negotiations, saying that he hopes to see such a decision confirmed on Friday.
“Fuel is essential for the functioning of institutions, of hospitals, of the distribution of water, of electricity. We must allow these supplies reliably, repetitively and dependably into Gaza,” he said.
He also noted that there must be “pauses” in the conflict. “If we do not have pauses, we will not keep up with the needs of the people of Gaza. And the Israelis are also caught up in those areas of conflict.”
The Israeli army has widened its air and ground attacks on the Gaza Strip, which has been under relentless airstrikes since the surprise offensive by Hamas on Oct. 7.