New UN footage reveals devastation in Gaza’s Khan Younis following Israeli troop withdrawal

The United Nations released new footage on Thursday showing widespread devastation in Khan Younis, a city in southern Gaza, following the recent withdrawal of Israeli ground troops.

The footage came after months of Israeli bombardment. Israel announced last Sunday that it had pulled additional soldiers from the area.

UNICEF spokesperson Tess Ingram described a harrowing incident involving her team: “I was in that car that was hit. It was waiting at a holding point just south of the Wadi Gaza checkpoint, where we are often instructed to wait before being called through. We were waiting there as instructed, and gunfire broke out in the vicinity. It seemed to be coming from the direction of the checkpoint towards civilians, who then turned and fled. Luckily, myself and my colleagues were all safe. But this just underscores the danger for humanitarian aid workers in Gaza at the moment that incidents like this continue to happen when they absolutely shouldn’t.”

A UN assessment team visiting Khan Younis reported that many buildings were destroyed and paved roads were turned into dirt tracks.

Ingram highlighted the dire medical situation: “Doctors are struggling to provide the care they want to, and that they used to in Gaza. It means that supplies are running out, staff are unable to be paid salaries, and many more of them are having to become volunteers. And that’s not sustainable because they have to be able to support their families in such desperate conditions. It means that children are dying without the appropriate medical care, or they’re unable to receive treatment that they need.”

In a separate incident, Ingram said a vehicle carrying her and her team was struck by live ammunition while waiting to enter northern Gaza. Their mission was subsequently aborted.