UN Report Says Over 570,000 People Are Starving in Gaza

Israel is using starvation as a weapon of war

One in four Palestinians living in the Gaza Strip — over 570,000 people — are starving due to the Israeli siege, according to a report using data from the UN and other aid agencies that was released Thursday.

The report, published by the Integrated Food Security Phase Classification (IPC), said the Israeli onslaught in Gaza has “caused catastrophic levels of acute food insecurity across the Gaza Strip.”

The IPC has a five-phase scale for malnutrition, and the report estimates the entire population of Gaza is facing Phase 3 or higher. Phase 3 is defined as: “Households either have food consumption gaps that are reflected by high or above-usual acute malnutrition; or are marginally able to meet minimum food needs but only by depleting essential livelihood assets or through crisis-coping strategies.”

One in four households in Gaza is in Phase 5, which means catastrophic famine-like conditions. Phase 5 is defined as: “Households have an extreme lack of food and/or other basic needs even after full employment of coping strategies. Starvation, death, destitution, and extremely critical acute malnutrition levels are evident. For famine classification, the area needs to have extreme critical levels of acute malnutrition and mortality.”

The IPC report came after Human Rights Watch said Israel was committing a war crime by using starvation as a weapon of war against Gaza’s civilian population. HRW said Israeli forces were “deliberately blocking the delivery of water, food, and fuel, while willfully impeding humanitarian assistance, apparently razing agricultural areas, and depriving the civilian population of objects indispensable to their survival.”

When Israel’s onslaught first began after the October 7 Hamas attack on southern Israel, Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant announced a “complete siege” on the already blockaded enclave and said Israel was fighting “human animals” in Gaza, which is home to over 1 million children.

Over 20,000 Palestinians have been killed in the US-backed Israeli slaughter so far, including over 8,000 children. As the war continues, many more could die from starvation and disease caused by the siege.

Author: Dave DeCamp

Dave DeCamp is the news editor of Antiwar.com, follow him on Twitter @decampdave.