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Israeli Strike on UN School Kills Dozens in Gaza

( – Israel is facing increased scrutiny for its airstrikes in Gaza. A recent strike has once again put a spotlight on the issue.

On June 6, Israel fired two missiles at classrooms in a United Nations school in the Nuseirat refugee camp. The school, located in central Gaza, was packed with displaced Palestinians. Israel claimed there were Hamas fighters in the building who were planning to carry out a terrorist attack. They said the airstrike was “precise” and killed up to 30 militants.

Israel Defense Forces (IDF) spokesperson Lt. Colonel Peter Lerner told the media that they’d been following activity at the school for days and tried to “avoid hurting innocents.” He warned against accepting the death toll released by officials in Gaza. The IDF didn’t release evidence to support the allegations.

The UN agency that runs the school called the incident “horrific” and called Israel’s claim that militants were hiding out there “shocking.” They said they couldn’t confirm whether it was true.

Authorities in Gaza said at least 35 people died in the attack, including 23 women and children. The wounded and dead were taken to al-Aqsa Martyrs’ Hospital in a neighboring town. The medical facility has reportedly been overwhelmed since the IDF began a new ground offensive in central Gaza.

Sam Rose, the director of the UN agency that runs the school, said there were 6,000 Palestinians sheltering at the school at the time of the strike. He called on Israel and Hamas to start following the international rules for war. Rose claimed there have been so many attacks on civilians that they’ve become normal. “In previous conflicts, single incidents like this would cause shock and outrage and would be remembered forever.” He claimed that horror has been normalized.

The strike on the school comes about a week after an Israeli strike caused a fire at a refugee camp in Rafah that killed dozens of people.

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