They include doctors, journalists, professors and poets.
More than 11,100 Palestinians have been killed in Gaza since Oct. 7, according to Gaza’s Health Ministry. While there is no breakdown between fighters and civilians, most of the dead are women and children.
In just a little over a month of war, that amounts to over 0.5 percent of Gaza’s more than 2 million people.
Mora tha 10,000 people were killed in Gaza since Oct. 7
The toll has stunned aid workers who have spent their lives working in conflict zones. The United Nations — which has lost more than 100 of its employees — has called the conditions “horrific,” describing Gaza as “a living nightmare” and “a graveyard for children.”
On Oct. 7, Hamas militants overran southern Israel, killing around 1,200 people and taking more than 230 hostages, according to Israel’s Foreign Ministry. Israel has responded with a relentless campaign of airstrikes and an expanding ground invasion on Gaza, destroying entire neighborhoods and displacing more than two-thirds of the population.
Strikes have hit refugee camps and residential neighborhoods, bakeries and water towers, solar panels and fishing boats, schools and hospitals, mosques and churches. Israel has said the strikes are aimed at Hamas infrastructure and are necessary to root out the group.
Hundreds are killed every day as bombardments hammer one of the world’s most densely populated areas.
Graphic about the people killed on Gaza
President Biden cast doubt on the numbers from the Gaza Ministry of Health on Oct. 25. Others in his administration have said more recently that the casualty figures could be greater than reported.
“It could be that they’re even higher than are being cited,” Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs Barbara Leaf said in a congressional hearing last week.
“In these extraordinarily dense confines, it just stands to reason that there are very high casualties,” she said.
At least 45 percent of Gaza’s housing units have been damaged or destroyed. Around 2,700 people are missing, the United Nations estimates; many are probably buried under the rubble.
More than 28,000 people are injured, according to the Gaza Ministry of Health.
“A whole generation has been permanently damaged and disabled,” said Ghassan Abu Sittah, a British Palestinian doctor working in hospitals in northern Gaza.
Injured people in Gaza since Oct. 7
But medical care is increasingly difficult to find. Fewer than half of Gaza’s hospitals are functioning, according to the United Nations. The situation in northern Gaza is especially dire, as shelling and ground attacks intensify near al Shifa, the enclave’s largest hospital, and other medical facilities nearby.
At least three babies died at Shifa when power ran out and incubators stopped working, Gaza’s Ministry of Health reported Saturday. Doctors say dozens more newborns are at imminent risk.
“We’re getting to a point of an even deeper level of catastrophic suffering and death,” said Mara Kronenfeld, the executive director of the U.S. National Committee of the U.N. agency for Palestinian refugees. “Any of those hospitals that are functioning have oil to run their generators, and that fuel is running out.”
Supplies have begun to trickle in through Egypt. Aid workers say it’s not nearly enough.
“It’s a drop in the bucket,” said Amber Alayyan, a pediatrician and deputy program manager for Palestine at Doctors Without Borders. Alayyan said the lack of supplies and the volume of injuries are overwhelming health-care centers.
People are coming into hospitals with severe burns, severed limbs and internal bleeding — injuries that could require multiple surgeries and “if not weeks of recovery, months and years,” she said.
“It’s absolutely impossible for any type of hospital to be able to sustain this type of burden,” Alayyan added. As more hospitals fail, she said, more people will die.
Nearly half of Gazans are children. More than 4,500 children have been killed since Oct. 7, surpassing the number of children killed in conflict zones around the world each year since 2019, according to Save The Children.
Charts showing number of child casualties in other major conflicts
“The cost to society will be seen for years to come,” Alayyan said.
Heba Abu Nada, a beloved Palestinian novelist and poet, posted a poem in Arabic on Twitter on Oct. 8 describing her life in Gaza.
“The city night is dark except for the glow of missiles, quiet except for the sound of bombs, terrifying except for the comfort of prayer, black except for the light of those who have been killed,” she wrote. “Good night, Gaza.”
It was her last tweet. Twelve days later, the 32-year-old was killed.
About this story
Editing by Reem Akkad and Samuel Granados. Copy editing by Paola Ruano.
Miriam Berger, Hajar Harb, Hazem Balousha, and Heba Farouk Mahfouz contributed to this report.
Sources: Data as of Nov. 13. Breakdowns as of Nov. 10. Gaza Health Ministry, United Nations, UNICEF, United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan.
Testimonies of those killed are based on interviews with relatives and friends, with additional information from their social media accounts.