Grave violations against Palestinian children: October 27

UN’s Children and Armed Conflict Agenda

Oct 27, 2023
A Palestinian man carries a young child after an Israeli airstrike destroyed the building behind them in Gaza City on October 7, 2023. (Photo: Mohammed Abed / AFP)

Ramallah, October 27, 2023—Israeli forces’ attacks in Gaza and military operations in the occupied West Bank since October 7 result in increasingly widespread grave violations against Palestinian children. 

Israel and the State of Palestine are a “situation of concern” in the United Nations Secretary General’s annual reporting on Children and Armed Conflict (CAAC) since 2006, when the first annual report was issued pursuant to Security Council Resolution 1612 (2005). Through this process, the United Nations has the mandate to monitor and verify six specific grave violations against children, to provide regular reports on grave violations to the Office of the Special Representative of the Secretary General for Children and Armed Conflict (OSRSG-CAAC), and to engage all parties to address grave violations.

The six grave violations serve as the basis to gather information and report on violations affecting children, and are killing and maiming of children, recruitment or use of children as soldiers, sexual violence against children, abduction of children, attacks against schools or hospitals, and denial of humanitarian access for children. All parties to armed conflict must protect children and prevent the commission of grave violations against them.

CAAC Bulletins specific to Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territory periodically have been issued over the past several years to provide specific information on trends and the impact of conflict-related violence on children and to inform UN dialogue with parties to the conflict on measures to prevent and end grave violations of children’s rights, in line with recommendations included in the UN Secretary General’s Annual Reports on Children and Armed Conflict.

The information below covers the period between October 7–27, 2023.

Killing and maiming

At least 3,038 Palestinian children in Gaza have been killed in Israeli attacks since October 7, according to the Palestinian Ministry of Health, with more than 6,000 injured. At least 940 children are reported missing under the rubble of destroyed buildings.

On October 26, the Ministry of Health released the names, ages, and national identification numbers of 6,747 Palestinians killed in Gaza between October 7 and 26. The list did not include 281 unidentified victims. 

The list included the names, ages, and national identification numbers of 2,665 Palestinian children. The age breakdown is as follows.


Number of fatalities

Under one year


Age 1 


Age 2


Age 3


Age 4


Age 5


Age 6


Age 7


Age 8


Age 9


Age 10


Age 11


Age 12


Age 13


Age 14


Age 15


Age 16


Age 17



An additional 248 killed Palestinian children remain unidentified.

35 Palestinian children have been killed in the occupied West Bank since October 7, according to documentation collected by DCIP, when the Israeli military began a full-scale bombardment on the Gaza Strip dubbed Operation Iron Swords.

Attacks on schools and hospitals

The World Health Organization (WHO) has documented at least 76 attacks on health care in Gaza as of October 23. 20 hospitals and 24 ambulances have been damaged, and at least 16 health care workers have been killed and 30 more injured. 12 out of 35 hospitals in Gaza are no longer operational due to damage from Israeli airstrikes and shelling or evacuation order.

At least 219 educational facilities have been damaged, including at least 29 UNRWA schools, as of October 25, according to UN OCHA. Eight schools were used as emergency shelters for IDPs, and the Israeli airstrike on Al-Maghazi UNRWA school on October 17 killed eight Palestinians and injured 40 others.

Denial of humanitarian access

An estimated 1.4 million Palestinians in Gaza are displaced, according to UN OCHA

Since October 11 at 2 p.m. Gaza has experienced a full electricity blackout after Israeli authorities cut the electricity and fuel supply on October 7 and the Gaza Power Plant depleted its reserves, according to UN OCHA

At least 45 percent of all housing units in the Gaza Strip have been damaged or completely destroyed since October 7, according to UN OCHA.

Two weeks after Israel cut off food, water, electricity and fuel from Gaza, international efforts resulted in approval for the entry of 20 aid trucks from the Rafah crossing on October 21. Since then, a total of 74 trucks carrying humanitarian aid have been allowed to enter Gaza through the Rafah crossing, according to UN OCHA. The trucks have included food, water, and medical supplies. Israeli authorities have not permitted fuel to be included in the deliveries.

Prior to October 7, an average of 500 trucks entered Gaza daily to provide relief to Palestinians. Zero humanitarian aid trucks entered Gaza between October 7 and 20.

“The State of Israel has no choice but to turn Gaza into a place that is temporarily or permanently impossible to live in,” reservist Major General Giora Eiland told Israeli media. “Creating a severe humanitarian crisis in Gaza is a necessary means to achieve the goal. Gaza will become a place where no human being can exist.”

“Human animals must be treated as such. There will be no electricity and no water [in Gaza], there will only be destruction. You wanted hell, you will get hell,” said Major General Ghassan Alian, head of Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT).

Under international law, genocide is prohibited and constitutes the deliberate killing of a large number of people from a particular nation or ethnic group with the aim of destroying that nation or group, in whole or in part. Genocide can result from killing or by creating conditions of life that are so unbearable it brings about the group’s destruction.

International humanitarian law prohibits indiscriminate and disproportionate attacks and requires all parties to an armed conflict to distinguish between military targets, civilians, and civilian objects. Deploying explosive weapons in densely-populated civilian areas constitutes indiscriminate attacks and carrying out direct attacks against civilians or civilian objects amounts to war crimes.

Israeli authorities have imposed a closure policy against the Gaza Strip since 2007 by strictly controlling and limiting the entry and exit of individuals; maintaining harsh restrictions on imports including food, construction materials, fuel, and other essential items; as well as prohibiting exports. Israel continues to maintain complete control over the Gaza Strip’s borders, airspace, and territorial waters.

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