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Daily death rate in Gaza higher than any other major 21st Century conflict – Oxfam

Oxfam Media Release

Israeli military killing 250 Palestinians per day with many more lives at risk from hunger, disease and cold.

Israel’s military is killing Palestinians at an average rate of 250 people a day which massively exceeds the daily death toll of any other major conflict of recent years, Oxfam said today, as the escalation of hostilities nears its 100th day.

In addition, over 1,200 people were killed in the horrific attacks by Hamas and other armed groups in Israel on 7 October and 330 Palestinians have been killed in the West Bank since then.

Sally Abi Khalil, Oxfam’s Middle East Director, said: “The scale and atrocities that Israel is visiting upon Gaza are truly shocking. For 100 days the people of Gaza have endured a living hell. Nowhere is safe and the entire population is at risk of famine.

“It is unimaginable that the international community is watching the deadliest rate of conflict of the 21st century unfold, while continuously blocking calls for a ceasefire.”

Using publicly available data, Oxfam calculated that number of average deaths per day for Gaza is significantly higher than any recent major armed conflict including Syria (96.5 deaths per day), Sudan (51.6), Iraq (50.8), Ukraine (43.9) Afghanistan (23.8) and Yemen (15.8).

The aid agency is warning that people are being increasingly forced into smaller areas due to constant bombardment, as they are forced to flee from places they have previously been told are safe, but nowhere in Gaza is truly secure. Over one million people – more than half the population – have been forced to seek shelter in Rafah on the Egyptian border. Oxfam staff in Rafah report massive overcrowding, with very little food and water, and essential medicines having run out. This crisis is further compounded by Israel’s restrictions on the entry of aid, closing borders, imposing a siege, and denying unfettered access. Currently only 10 per cent of the weekly food aid needed is getting in.

Oxfam is also warning of the massive threat to life, beyond direct casualties, from hunger and disease. The onset of cold and wet weather is making the situation even more critical, with a shortage of blankets, no fuel for heating devices and no hot water. One of Oxfam’s partner organizations, Palestinian Agricultural Relief Committees (PARC), described the situation for those living in tents as “worse than anything you could imagine”, with makeshift shelters letting in rain, being blown away in the wind and people resorting to desperate measures like selling precious food or water supplies in order to get a blanket.

Mutaz, an engineer who has been displaced to Al-Mawasi with his family, said: “The rain was going down from all sides of the tent. We had to sleep lying over the bag of flour to protect it from the rain. My wife and three of my daughters use one blanket at night. There are only enough blankets for four people to share. We have nothing.”

Earlier this week, a camp in Jabaliya was flooded with sewage when pipelines and a pumping station were damaged by Israeli air strikes. The lack of clean drinking water and proper sanitation poses a huge risk to health. Cases of diarrhoea are 40 times higher than this time last year, although in reality, the number of cases is likely to be significantly higher.

Sally Abi Khalil said: “While the mass atrocities continue, lives continue to be lost and critical supplies cannot get in. Israel’s total blockade of the Gaza Strip is restricting life-saving aid, including food, medical supplies and water and sanitation facilities.

“On top of the already horrific death toll, many more people could die from hunger, preventable diseases, diarrhoea and cold. The situation is particularly worrying for children, pregnant women and those with existing medical conditions.

“The only way to stop the bloodshed and prevent many more lives being lost is for an immediate ceasefire, for hostages to be released and for crucial aid supplies to be allowed in.”

The United Nations International Court of Justice held a hearing yesterday on the legality of Israel’s prolonged assault on Gaza, and may issue an emergency order for the suspension of Israel’s military campaign. Oxfam supports all efforts to investigate and address all mass atrocity crimes and human rights violations, irrespective of the perpetrator.


  • Figures are based on where data is available, other conflicts for which there is not data, have not been included.
  • Deaths per day statistics are based on civilian and combatant deaths.
  • According to UNOCHA, there were 23,074 reported deaths in Gaza between 7 October 23 and 7 January 24, an average of 250.8 per day and 330 deaths so far in the West Bank.
  • Deaths per day statistics for Afghanistan, Iraq, Syria and Yemen from: Human Cost of Post-9/11 Wars: Direct War Deaths in Major War Zones, Afghanistan (October 2001 – October 2019); Iraq (March 2003 – October 2019); Syria (September 2014-October 2019); Yemen (October 2002-October 2019); and Other. Neta C. Crawford and Catherine Lutz, November 13, 2019.
  • Sources for Ukraine statistics: UN OHCHR. Source for combatant casualties since February 2022 is https://theloop.ecpr.eu/estimating-troop-losses-on-both-sides-in-the-russia-ukraine-war/; https://www.reuters.com/world/europe/ukrainian-group-says-more-than-30000-troops-have-died-russias-invasion-2023-11-15/. These figures are best estimates.
  • Sudan figures from UNOCHA (April 15 – December 7, 2023).
  • According to UNRWA, over 1 million people have fled to Rafah governate.
  • According to the Food Security Cluster, humanitarian food assistance is only meeting 10% of the weekly need, whilst 2.2m people need food each day.
  • According to the Joint Humanitarian Operations Centre (JHOC) Daily Readout, January 9, 2023, the number of cases of acute watery diarrhoea in Gaza are 40 times higher than the same period last year, but expected to be higher due to the lack of data from areas without access.


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  1. New England Cocky

    America is promoting the 4Bs solution – ”BULLSHIT BY BIDEN & BLINKEN” while funding more military armaments to the IDF assassins, much to the delight of the US NE Military Industrial Complex that is enjoying considerable financial profits re-stocking military stores, at every cost to the American Taxpayers.

  2. Phil Pryor

    One can be threatened by religious superstitious fanaticism, for the Catholics, Protestants, Muslims, Jews, are all murderous, thieving, righteous, supremacist, racist, xenophobic, illogical, fanatical, egofixated on myth, fantasy, legend, old scribble. Nobody today has much paperwork on family and rights, and even the British royals cannot claim land by some rancid old lying story. So, how can we stop this murdering, thieving, illegal and unfair claiming, especially about holy lands, gods (never provable or visible) or socalled “rights”? Surely not one Jew today can accurately claim and prove connection unbroken to ancient times, and even then, no rights to someone else’s land could be sustained in law. e g., There are Australians who might claim ancient connections, that they are “Irish” or Scottish”, had ancestors hounded out, deprived, dispossessed, and while there is some “truth ” in such tales, no claim could ever be made in international law to get some slab of land back. I have known many, including Polish connections, who have failed in vague claims. The Palestinians of 1917 were betrayed in evil carelessness by the British, and their right ot consultation and justice denied, and they included c. !!%of jews among Muslims, Christians and assorted others. Indigenous peoples everywhere have better claims, but…So, can we return to the enticing but impossible two state solution, going back to legalisms even before 1948? It is all we can do in the face of criminal Zionist actions. The murdering USA types of leaders, having learned of unpleasant domestic reaction to shed USA blood as in Iraq and Afghanistan, now just send weapons to perpetuate agony and criminality. It is murderous, intrusive, futile, selfish.

  3. Canguro

    The savagery currently being meted against the Palestinians and witnessed by the global community puts to rest any archaic notion that Israel is a civilised nation. It isn’t. The barbarism is appalling, the cruelty unconscionable, and the aiding & abetting by its sponsor state is sickening with its determined air of ‘nothing to see here’, and just keep those armament shipments rolling.

    The MIC, that multi-headed leviathan risen from the depths of hell with its amorphous agenda aimed at the extinction of human life on this planet must surely rank as one of mankind’s most evil creations. The fact that its myriad manufacturing facilities are embedded in communities across the American landscape means, in essence, that millions of American people are complicit in the ongoing manufacture of weapons destined to kill their fellow kind.

    Sick country, sick people, sick example to the rest of the world.

  4. David Stakes

    Obvious that some sort of revenge strategy is going on here. Look I know WW2 was also a crime against the Jewish people. But this holding a grudge is a too much.

  5. paul walter

    And still the ABC and the government persecute honest people like Nour Heydour

  6. Caz

    David, if Israel was holding a grudge it should be about Germany, not Palestine. My own health is being affected by all this. My frustration level keeps rising with every mealy mouthed response from Biden, Albanese, Marles and Wong. Never was this saying more applicable.

    The standard you walk by, ( Albanese, Biden, Marles & Wong) is the standard you accept.

    We true Labor people are still raising the betrayal of Gough Whitlam. And thanks to Jenny Hosking people born after 1970 now know what the UK and US did to our elected government in 1975. This is another betrayal of the Australian people,

    History will not remember you kindly.

  7. B Sullivan


    If Israel builds cities then it qualifies as a civilised nation. You (and of course the rest of the world) are by unknowing misuse redefining a word which was originally meant to indicate that the people in question build structures and live communally in fixed permanent locations. Barbarism is derived from the xenophobic Ancient Greek civilisation with the intention of mocking any other city building nation that did not speak Greek by claiming that the sounds they made when they spoke sounded like the bleating of sheep. Barbarians were just as civilised as any other city dwellers. The Aztec city builders were one of the most murderous and cruel civilisations in history, sometimes slaughtering tens of thousands of captives as human sacrifices to their gods in a single day. It would still be inappropriate to refer to them as barbarians unless you share the Ancient Greeks disdain for non-Greek speaking peoples. They were cruel but they were still civilised.

    Israel’s behaviour is extremely vicious but once again people are likely to confuse that with the word savage, which is derived from the French word sauvage meaning wild as in natural. That would be a more appropriate word than barbarian for uncivilised societies that live as nature evolved them but because its meaning has been confused with frenzied viciousness it is now regarded as offensive when it was originally accurately descriptive.

    The thing is, because we constantly misuse our vocabulary, we end up losing the very words that are most appropriate for what we wish to express. We are evolving our language into confined newspeak, that is we are losing our vocabulary of dissent.

  8. New England Cocky

    @ B Sullivan: What have we here?? I do declare that a practicing ZION@ZI has slipped through the security barriers to spread the mantra of distorted history that belongs in Orwell’s 1984 rather than 21st century Gaza Strip.
    All this bull manure about words and their meanings is simply space-filling semantics excusing the inexcusable!!
    ”Building cities qualifies as a civilised nation” then slaughtering innocent women & kids qualifies as ZION@ZI GENOCIDE!!
    The IDF and their corrupt political masters are ZION@ZI war criminals!!
    So let us in on the secret ….. how many members of your family died in the German Holocaust 1933 to 1945??
    Can you explain how imposing Netanyahu’s Nakba on innocent third party Indigenous Palestinian civilians is payback against the horrors meted out by Austrian Adolf & his German gutter mates??

  9. Canguro

    B Sullyven, I’ve often thought what this website needs is a contributor with a strong & solid grasp of the etymological foundations of the English language; a someone who through their finely-honed attention to the way words are presented in both the context of the implicit message they carry along with having a detective’s nose for linguistic or syntactical snafus isn’t afraid to take the poorer scribblers to task.

    It seems that you’ve decided to take the leap and shoulder the burden for this onerous and responsible task.

    Let me be among the first to congratulate you on this long-overdue executive decision; to act as the unpaid and voluntary whip committed to instilling a higher degree of accuracy and finesse amongst this motley band of subjective opinionistas and particularly so in that sensitive region of what words really mean as distinct from some clumsy attribution akin to the Red Queen’s insistence that they should mean whatever she wished them to is not a job for the faint of heart.

    So, brave man, rally forth, and looking forward to further contributions! Keep the bastards honest, Bazza, that’s what it’s about.

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