UNRWA SITUATION REPORT #25 ON THE SITUATION IN THE GAZA STRIP AND THE WEST BANK, INCLUDING EAST JERUSALEM

UNRWA SITUATION REPORT #25 ON THE SITUATION IN THE GAZA STRIP AND THE WEST BANK, INCLUDING EAST JERUSALEM

Key Points  

The Gaza Strip 

  • In the last 24 hours, two additional UNRWA colleagues were killed. UNRWA also received confirmation that one colleague was killed on 3 November. 92 UNRWA colleagues have been killed and at least 26 injured since the start of hostilities. This is the highest number of United Nations aid workers killed in a conflict in the history of the United Nations.
  • Sharpnel fell into the school yard of an UNRWA school in Khan Younis due to a strike that hit a nearby building, injuring 15 people. Some 5,000 IDPs are sheltering in the school.
  • Since 4 November, Israel has opened a humanitarian "corridor” along the main North–South Road in the Gaza Strip from 10 am to 2 pm. As a result, at least 40,000 people - mostly walking -  have traveled from north to south. UN monitors and NGOs are supporting through monitoring and providing water and biscuits just south of the Wadi Gaza point.
  • Almost 1.5 million people have been displaced across the Gaza Strip since 7 October. Two additional shelters were opened in the Middle area. Nearly 730,000 internally displaced persons (IDPs) are now sheltering in 151 UNRWA installations across all five governorates of the Gaza Strip, including in the north.
  • Over 570,000 IDPs are sheltering in 94 facilities in the Middle, Khan Younis and Rafah areas. Nearly 160,000 IDPs were sheltering in 57 UNRWA schools in the northern and Gaza areas as of 12 October 2023, before the evacuation order was issued by the Israeli Authorities. UNRWA is not able to access these shelters to assist or protect the IDPs and does not have information on their needs and conditions.

 

The West Bank, including East Jerusalem

  • The Israeli Security Forces (ISF) launched a large-scale operation in Tulkarem refugee camp in the early morning of 7 November, lasting around five hours.
  • During the operation, streets were damaged by ISF bulldozers, including the entrance of the camp where UNRWA girls’ schools are located; some shops and houses were damaged. Improvised Explosive Devices were detonated by armed actors, and heavy exchanges of fire took place. No fatalities were reported; however at least five persons were wounded by live ammunition or shrapnel.
  • The operation in Tulkarem refugee camp disrupted electricity, water and sewage services. The UNRWA Health Centre was damaged due to fire from a nearby electricity transformer; however, the damage was contained. Damage to the external wall to the UNRWA girls’ schools was observed; Agency services in the camp were suspended, including schools for over 1,300 students.
  • ISF conducted an operation in Jenin refugee camp in the early morning, with UNRWA schools evacuated for children’s safety, impacting 1,700 students.
  • The Palestinian Security Forces (PSF) launched a large-scale operation in Jalazone refugee camp around midday, to detain people for alleged criminal activity. During the operation, clashes started including the use of tear gas and exchange of live ammunition between PSF and armed individuals in the camp. Several PSF officers were injured; one individual was killed, and a number injured. 1,600 students took cover in UNRWA school premises for several hours until the operation had concluded.  

 

Overall Situation 

The Gaza Strip

  • According to the Ministry of Health (MoH) in Gaza, over 10,328 people, including 2,550 women, 4,237 children and 631 older people have been killed in the Gaza Strip since 7 October; over 25,956 have been injured. This is in addition to the 2,260 people reported missing, presumably under the rubble of destroyed buildings, including 1,270 children.
  • Overall, nearly 1,400 Israelis and foreign nationals have been killed in Israel, according to the Israeli Authorities, the vast majority on 7 October (OCHA).

 

The West Bank

  • According to OCHA, since 7 October, 150 Palestinians, including 44 children, have been killed by ISF, and eight, including one child, by Israeli settlers. 

 

Humanitarian Access, Protection of Civilians 

The Gaza Strip

  • In the last 24 hours, two additional colleagues were killed. UNRWA confirmed that one colleague was killed on 3 November. 92 UNRWA colleagues have been killed and at least 26 injured since the start of hostilities.
  • One third of the UNRWA colleagues who were killed were below the Wadi Gaza line, in the southern and middle areas of the Gaza Strip.
  • To date, 555 IDPs sheltering in UNRWA facilities have been injured and 66 killed since 7 October. Of those, 23 of the IDPs killed and the majority of the IDPs injured (at least 400) were in installations south of Wadi Gaza.
  • At least 51 UNRWA installations have been impacted since the beginning of the war. At least 70 per cent of them are south of Wadi Gaza, in the middle and southern areas.
  • On 7 November, a total of 81 trucks carrying humanitarian supplies, including medical supplies, food and drinking water, entered the Gaza Strip through Rafah, bringing the total number of trucks to 650 since 21 October when the first convoy was allowed to enter. Four of the trucks which entered on 7 November were UNRWA trucks. UNRWA teams received all trucks in the convoys inside Gaza and helped with storage and distribution, in cooperation with other UN agencies.
  • This is far below the quantities needed to meet the needs of over two million people trapped in Gaza. Before the war, around 500 trucks, including of humanitarian assistance but predominantly commercial supplies, entered Gaza every day.
  • No fuel has been allowed into the Gaza Strip since 7 October. Fuel is critical to continue lifesaving humanitarian operations in Gaza.

 

The West Bank

  • In Tulkarem refugee camp some UNRWA installations were damaged, including the UNRWA Health Centre, due to a fire at a nearby electricity transformer. The damage was contained. An external wall of the UNRWA Girls’ School and the transfer station sustained some damage.  UNRWA operations in the camp were suspended, including schools affecting over 1,340 students.

 

UNRWA Response  

The Gaza Strip  

UNRWA Shelters 

  • The number of displaced people continues to increase. UNRWA shelters in the Middle and South areas are severely overcrowded and are unable to accommodate new arrivals.
  • One school in Maghazi camp, in the Middle areas, is now hosting more than 23,800 IDPs, while another school nearby currently has over 19,900 IDPs. More than 21,700 IDPs are sheltering at UNRWA Khan Younis Training Centre (KYTC), and 16,700 IDPs are sheltering at the logistics base in Rafah.  These installations are accommodating nine times their intended capacity. They are not designed to host such a huge number of people and do not have adequate facilities to provide safe and dignified living conditions.
  • The number of toilets differs from one shelter to another. In general, there are 30 to 50 toilets in a school (including those for persons with disabilities). On average, 160 people sheltering in UNRWA schools facilities share a single toilet.
  • On average, there is one shower unit for every 700 people in UNRWA shelters.
  • People inside shelters continue to suffer from lack of food, non-food items, low hygiene levels and increased mental health issues. 

 

Health 

  • Nine (out of 22) UNRWA health centres are still operational in the middle and southern areas, recording 5,850 patient visits on 7 November, including Palestine Refugees and non-refugees. 
  • Midwives are providing medical care for post-natal and high-risk pregnant women at the nine operational health centres. A total of 180 post-natal and high-risk pregnancy cases have been attended to at the health centres and a total 708 of post-natal mothers have been attended to in the shelters since the beginning of October.   
  • Seven out of the nine active health centres resumed vaccination services in line with the national vaccination programme, a total of 810 children were vaccinated.
  • Dental services for emergency cases (bleeding, swelling, trauma, and extraction) were provided to 165 people in seven health centres.
  • On 7 November 2023, UNRWA continued to provide health care to IDPs at shelters through 92 mobile medical points and 264 shealth workers who attended a total of 9,928 cases. 
  • Fuel and medicine are running severely low, making the delivery of primary health care at UNRWA health centres very challenging.

 

Relief and Social Services/Psychosocial support

  • UNRWA has counsellors and social workers in the shelters to provide psychosocial first aid and other specialized protection services. Since 7 October, 28,100 individuals (over 60 per cent of whom are females) received psychosocial support including family support and recreational activities.

 

Water, Sanitation, Hygiene (WASH)

  • With the little fuel it has remaining, UNRWA continues to operate water wells in Khan Younis and Rafah for the provision of potable and domestic water supply. Potable water trucking operations to the shelters in Rafah and Khan Younis areas also continue. However, given the high number of people in the shelters, the water provided is not enough to meet personal water consumption needs as per WHO standards.
  • UNRWA has been providing about 1.5 litres of potable water and between 3-4 litres of water for cooking, washing and hygiene per person per day in all shelters. The provision of water, either through desalination plants or water tracking, requires fuel, which is running severely low.
  • In one of the most crowded shelters, KYTC, which now hosts more than 21,700 IDPs, UNRWA in partnership with UNICEF has installed a desalination plant to provide potable water to IDPs at the shelter.
  • Solid waste collection from the camps and from emergency shelters and transfer to landfills also continues in the Middle, Khan Younis and Rafah areas. However, the scarcity of fuel and shortage of trucks are hampering solid waste management activities.
  • On a daily basis, UNRWA teams handle maintenance and rehabilitation works at several shelters including plumbing, repairing of water and sewage networks, electrical fixings, to ensure that facilities at the shelters are as operational as possible.

Food Security

  • Eleven bakeries have been hit and destroyed since 7 October. Only one of the WFP-contracted bakeries, along with eight others in the southern and Middle areas, are able to provide bread to shelters while working intermittently, depending on the availability of flour and fuel. People queue for long hours outside bakeries, where they are exposed to bombardments and strikes.
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