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Russian President Vladimir Putin promised to continue to supply the Gaza Strip with humanitarian aid and urged a peaceful resolution to fighting between Israel and Hamas.
“Russia will continue to supply the Gaza Strip with essential goods, including medicines and medical equipment,” Putin told Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas during a telephone call, the Kremlin said, adding that Putin urged the “importance of a quick cessation of the bloodshed and the resumption of the political process”.
In the morgue of the Nasser Hospital, in southern Gaza, workers wrap the corpses of people killed in Israeli airstrikes in white cloth amid the stench of death. They record whatever basic facts they can about the dead: name, identity card number, age, sex.
Some of the bodies are badly mutilated. Only those that have been identified or claimed by relatives can go for burial and be included in the Gaza Health Ministry’s death toll for the war. The rest are stored in the morgue’s refrigerator, often for weeks.
The toll stood at around 20,000 people on Thursday, amid renewed international calls for a fresh ceasefire in Gaza. The ministry says thousands more dead remain buried beneath the rubble.
About 70% of those killed are women and children, it says. The ministry’s figures have drawn international attention to the high number of civilians being killed in the Israeli military’s offensive, which it launched after Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack on Israel, the bloodiest in the country’s 75 year history.