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Daily Noon Briefing Highlights: Occupied Palestinian territory and Israel

19 May 2021

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Destruction in Gaza following an air strike on 15 May 2021. © OCHA oPt

Daily Noon Briefing Highlights – 19 May 2021

Occupied Palestinian territory and Israel

Emergency Relief Coordinator Mark Lowcock yesterday released a statement on the situation in the occupied Palestinian territory and Israel, echoing the Secretary-General’s calls for the parties to stop the aerial and artillery bombardments and the indiscriminate launching of rockets, which have brought nothing but death, destruction and widespread trauma.

Mr. Lowcock called for funding for a speedy response and access to enable the humanitarian community to respond to the extent needed.

The oPt Humanitarian Fund is expected to release US$14 million towards the response, and the Secretary-General and Mr. Lowcock will be launching a fuller appeal soon.

The UN reiterates that crossings into Gaza should be opened for the entrance of essential and humanitarian supplies, including fuel for basic services and supplies to curb the spread of COVID-19, and to ensure that those who need life-saving treatment can access it.

In terms of casualties, the UN Human Rights Office has verified that 219 Palestinians, including 63 children, have been killed in Gaza. According to Israeli sources, 12 people have been killed, including 2 children and a soldier. In the West Bank, there have been 25 Palestinian deaths, including 4 children. Thousands of people have been injured, mainly in the West Bank and in Gaza.

In Gaza as of yesterday, six hospitals and nine primary health-care centers have sustained damages, and the Gaza Central Laboratory has stopped COVID-19 testing after being damaged by a nearby air strike. An NGO hospital is not functioning due to fuel shortages.

Due to damage to the electrical feeding line, electrical power supply has been reduced to three to four hours daily on average.

More than 460 homes have been destroyed and more than 1,000 have been damaged, affecting more than 11,000 people.

In terms of the humanitarian response, as of 17 May, the World Food Programme (WFP) has provided 74,000 people in Gaza with electronic vouchers.

Humanitarian partners are also assessing damages to homes and prioritizing vulnerable groups for support to repairs.

UNRWA is providing water, sanitation and hygiene services for the displaced in their designated emergency shelters.