Israeli strike kills 16 at Gaza school


At least 16 people were killed in an Israeli strike on a school sheltering displaced Palestinian families in central Gaza on Saturday, the Palestinian health ministry said.

It said the attack on the school in Al-Nuseirat also wounded more than 50.

The Israeli military said it took precautions to minimise risk to civilians before it targeted gunmen who were using the area as a hideout to plan and carry out attacks against soldiers. Hamas denied its fighters were there.

At the scene, Ayman al-Atouneh said he saw children among the dead. "We came here running to see the targeted area, we saw bodies of children, in pieces, this is a playground, there was a trampoline here, there were swing-sets, and vendors," he said.

Mahmoud Basal, spokesman of the Gaza Civil Emergency Service, said in a statement that the number of dead could rise because many of the wounded were in critical condition.

The attack meant no place in the enclave was safe for families who leave their houses to seek shelters, he said.

Al-Nuseirat, one of Gaza Strip's eight historic refugee camps, was the site of stepped-up Israeli bombardment on Saturday. An air strike earlier on a house in the camp killed at least 10 people and wounded many others, according to medics.

In its daily update of people killed in the nearly nine-month-old war, the Gaza health ministry said Israeli military strikes across the enclave killed at least 29 Palestinians in the past 24 hours and wounded 100 others.

Among those killed in separate air strikes on Saturday were five local journalists, raising the toll of journalists killed since October 7 to 158, according to the Hamas-led Gaza government media office.

Meanwhile, an Israeli airstrike in Gaza City killed the Hamas-appointed deputy minister of labour in the Palestinian enclave, Hamas media reported on Sunday.

Ehab al-Ghussein was killed along with three other people in the attack, according to the Civil Emergency Service.

At least 38,153 Palestinians have been killed and 87,828 injured in Israel's military offensive on Gaza since October 7, Gaza's health ministry said on Sunday.

Israel has lost 323 soldiers in Gaza and says at least a third of the Palestinian dead are fighters.

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