Middle East

‘We cannot have children starving to death in Gaza, it’s not acceptable’: UNICEF chief


In an interview with FRANCE 24, the executive director of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) sounded the alarm about the plight of children in Gaza after more than five months of Israel’s war with Hamas. Catherine Russell said that an estimate of 13,450 children killed in the Palestinian territory since October 7, 2023 is “probably on the low end”. She noted that many more children are trapped in the rubble or are wounded and often separated from their families. Russell also discussed the “incredibly dire” situation regarding hunger in Gaza. According to a UN-backed food security assessment, half of Gaza’s population is experiencing “catastrophic” hunger, with famine projected to hit the north “any time” between now and May without urgent intervention. “This is very much a man-made problem,’ Russell told FRANCE 24. “All of us in the international community have to do better here and make sure that we can get aid in to these children.” She concluded: “We cannot have children starving to death [in Gaza], that is not acceptable”.

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