The Ministry of Health in Gaza took a decisive step in unveiling a comprehensive list containing the names of at least 7,000 Palestinians who perished in Israeli airstrikes. The move is framed as an effort to ensure that "the whole world will know the truth about the genocidal war that the occupation is waging against the Palestinian people."
Behind the Numbers: Individual Stories and Tragedies
Ashraf al-Qedra, the spokesperson for the ministry, made the announcement during a press conference where he delved into a detailed 212-page report, enumerating the victims.
The grim statistics reveal that "the Israeli occupation killed at least 7,028 Palestinians, including 2,913 children, 1,709 women and 397 elderly people." As al-Qedra poignantly remarked, "The world must realize that behind every number is the story of a person whose name and identity are known.
Our people are not nobodies who can be ignored." The initiative was partly in response to US President Joe Biden expressing skepticism over the reported Palestinian casualty figures.
The Ministry of Health just published the names of 7028 Palestinians, including 2913 children killed in #Gaza.
Scrolling over this is so painful.
The first 88 names are from the same family! The next 72 from one family! And the undescribable pain goes on. No words. pic.twitter.com/irvh3pXNTY — Aseel AlBajeh أسيل البجة (@AseelAlBajeh) October 26, 2023
Unearthing Details from the Report
According to the document, of the 7,028 casualties, 6,747 had their names registered, while 281 remain unidentified – most of these are believed to be children.
The report also provides a haunting daily breakdown that underscores the intensifying conflict, with the death toll rising from 256 on October 7th to a staggering 481 on October 25th. Alarmingly, on three separate days, the fatalities surpassed 600, with October 24 witnessing the highest single-day toll of 756.
Highlighting the devastating impact on families, Aseel al-Bajeh from the Palestinian rights group al-Haq pointed out that the initial 88 names released by the Gaza Health Ministry all belonged to a single family. In an equally distressing revelation, the health ministry shared that all living members of approximately 45 families had been obliterated from the civil registry in Gaza earlier this month.
In response to these developments, the US State Department acknowledged the significant loss of life in Gaza. However, they refrained from confirming the exact figures, citing a lack of “independent confirmation”.
Matthew Miller, when probed about President Biden's reservations on the death toll, stated, “We mourn the loss of every one of those civilians. We just are unable to offer our independent confirmation of the number because there's no independent body off that making assessment.
The only organization that can give that is currently given this number is Hamas. Obviously, we don't trust Hamas”.