‘I heard all of my friends’ last breath’: Testimonies from the Nuseirat massacre

The Israeli massacre in Gaza's Nuseirat camp killed over 270 Palestinians and injured many more. Survivors say the horrors they witnessed will stay with them for the rest of their lives.

Injured Palestinians, including women and children, are treated in Al Aqsa Martyrs Hospital following Israeli attacks on Nuseirat, Al Maghazi, Az Zawayda and Al Bureij camps, in Deir Al Balah, Gaza on 8 June 2024

Tareq S. Hajjaj writes in Mondoweiss:

The Israeli massacre in the Nuseirat camp to liberate four Israeli prisoners held by resistance factions in the Gaza Strip started at 11:00 in the morning on June 8. Although the scenes of Palestinians running for safety may have seemed sadly familiar, this invasion was different from others that have been carried out across the Gaza Strip.

This time, the Israeli military wore civilian clothes, rode in Palestinian cars, and moved among the people in disguise. There were no warnings to evacuate, or orders from the army to move elsewhere, and people were surprised by the Israeli special forces and tanks. A large number of special forces hidden among the people only revealed themselves once the deadly operation began as other special forces stormed the area traveling in cars loaded with luggage, the same luggage that the displaced people carry with them, such as mattresses, pillows, blankets, and bags. When the Palestinians detected them, the soldiers quickly called for support, and helicopters, fighter planes, artillery, and tanks descended. Reconnaissance aircraft and foot solders then began committing massacres against the civilian population.

The intensity of shelling and gunfire soon warned the residents that a massacre was unfolding. They left their homes and took to the streets running in search of safety, which could not be found.

The Israeli operation killed 274 Palestinians, including 64 children, and injured 689 Palestinians in total. “Some of the bodies that arrived at the hospital were body parts, as well as dismembered bodies,” the Gaza Ministry of Health reported when announcing the casualty numbers.

As the world celebrates the liberation of four Israeli hostages from the Gaza Strip, and the media focuses on their lives, freedom, and the happiness of their families there is barely a mention of the number of Palestinian casualties or consideration that each of those killed are also leaving behind a bereaved family.

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