Israel has claimed responsibility for an airstrike that struck a Gaza refugee camp killing dozens of people and injuring hundreds more.
The exact number of casualties is not clear; however, reports from one doctor within Gaza City claimed hundreds were killed and wounded in the attack.
Scotland’s First Minister Humza Yousaf, who has family stuck in Gaza, condemned the bombing.
“I am sorry to those innocent men, women and children in Jabalia Refugee Camp that the world could not protect you,” he wrote on X, formerly Twitter.
“This blatant disregard for human life must be condemned unequivocally.
I am sorry to those innocent men, women and children in Jabalia Refugee Camp that the world could not protect you.— Humza Yousaf (@HumzaYousaf) October 31, 2023
This blatant disregard for human life must be condemned unequivocally.
Do not let any more children die. We need an immediate ceasefire, nothing less.#Jabalia pic.twitter.com/ujNdNlxE5f
“Do not let any more children die. We need an immediate ceasefire, nothing less.”
Yousaf said his family – including his Dundee-based in-laws Elizabeth and Maged El-Nakla, the parents of his wife Nadia – had run out of fresh water on Sunday.
Three countries in the Middle East, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), have all issued statements shortly after the attack to condemn Israel and its leader, Benjamin Netanyahu, for attacking the camp.
Qatar described the strike as “a new massacre against the defenceless Palestinian people, especially women and children”, which is “a dangerous escalation in the course of confrontations”.
Saudi Arabia echoed Qatar’s sentiments, condemning its neighbouring nation of Israel in “the strongest terms” for its “inhumane … targeting of Jabaliya camp”.
The nation added: “The dangerous humanitarian conditions resulting from the continuous escalation cannot be justified at all, and sparing blood, protecting civilians, and stopping military operations are urgent priorities.”
The UAE issued its own stern diplomatic warning to Israel after only having normalised relations in 2020 after decades of historic mistrust and tension.
The Arab nation said: “Indiscriminate attacks will result in irreparable ramifications in the region.”
As per the United Nations Relief Works Agency for Palestine, there are 116,011 refugees registered as living in the camp as of 2023.
That number, however, is expected to be higher as many of those who live there may not be registered with the UN agency.
Taking responsibility for the strike on the refugee camp, Israel Defence Forces (IDF) spokesperson, Lt. Col. Richard Hecht, told CNN a Hamas commander was the target, but that he was “hiding, as they do, behind civilians.”
He described the loss of civilian life at the camp as “the tragedy of war,” and reiterated the call for civilians to evacuate the north of the Strip.
Mr Hecht said the Hamas commander who was the target of the strike “killed many Israelis.”
“It’s a very complicated battle space,” Mr Hecht said of the area the IDF struck. “There could be infrastructure there, tunnels there. We’re looking into it and (will) give you more data as the hour moves ahead.”
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