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Lancet study finds death toll in Gaza could exceed 186,000



London: There may have been more than 186,000 fatalities during Israel's war on Gaza, a study that was released in the medical journal Lancet suggests.

According to the analysis, the amount would account for nearly 8% of Gaza's 2.3 million pre-war inhabitants. Gaza's Health Ministry reports that since Israel began its military assault on the strip in October, more than 38,000 Palestinians have died.

The Lancet report did, however, issue a warning that given the widespread devastation of medical facilities, food distribution networks, and other essential infrastructure, the actual death toll may well be far higher, Arab News reported.

The humanitarian situation has been made worse by substantial financial cuts that the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees has experienced.

As of February of this year, over 10,000 people were thought to be buried beneath the debris, and 35 per cent of Gaza's structures had been damaged, according to UN estimates.

“In recent conflicts, such indirect deaths range from three to 15 times the number of direct deaths,” it said.

The study using a conservative estimate of four indirect deaths for every direct death, stated “It is not implausible to estimate that up to 186,000 or even more deaths could be attributable.”

The Lancet report also addressed allegations of data manipulation made by the Health Ministry of Gaza, noting that such accusations are deemed "implausible" by Israeli intelligence, the UN, and the World Health Organisation.

It said: “Documenting the true scale is crucial for ensuring historical accountability and acknowledging the full cost of the war. It is also a legal requirement.”

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TAGS:Lancet studyIsrael war on Gaza
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