UN Clarifies That Death Toll of 35,000 in Gaza Hasn’t Changed

The clarification came after figures published by the UN included numbers of Palestinian bodies that have been fully identified

On Monday, the UN said that the number of Palestinians killed by Israel in Gaza since October 7 hasn’t changed, a figure that has surpassed 35,000.

UN spokesman Farhan Haq made the clarification after the UN’s Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) published figures from Gaza’s Health Ministry that showed the number of Palestinians killed who have been fully identified, which, as of April 30, was 24,686 out of 34,622 total fatalities.

Out of the 24,686 fully identified Palestinians, there were 7,797 children, 4,959 women, 1,924 elderly, and 10,006 men. The figures were published by the OCHA on May 8. Two days earlier, the OCHA published figures that used estimates from Gaza’s Media Office that said 34,735 Palestinians had been killed, including over 14,500 children and 9,500 women.

The discrepancy led to claims that the UN had “halved” the number of women and children killed in Gaza, but Haq clarified the overall death toll hasn’t changed and that the latest numbers didn’t take into account the roughly 10,000 dead Palestinians who haven’t been fully identified.

“There’s about another 10,000 plus bodies who are still have to be fully identified. And so then the details of those which of those are children, which of those are women that will be reestablished once the full identification process is complete,” Haq said.

According to CNN, Gaza’s Health Ministry said in its latest report that a total of 15,103 children and 9,961 women have been killed in Gaza since October 7.

Haq added that the UN hasn’t been able to verify the figures from Gaza’s Health Ministry but noted their numbers have been historically accurate, something that’s been acknowledged by US and Israeli officials. The Hebrew-language news site Local Call reported in January that the Israeli military determined the figures were reliable and used them to estimate how many civilians they’ve killed.

Two Palestinian Health Ministry officials told CNN that the total number of deaths also does not include another 10,000 people who are missing and presumed dead under the rubble.

Author: Dave DeCamp

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