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At least 274 Palestinians killed in Israeli raid that freed 4 hostages

AT LEAST 274 Palestinians were killed and hundreds more were wounded in the Israeli raid that rescued four hostages held by Hamas, Gaza’s Health Ministry said today. 

The news of the massacre and freeing of the hostages broke as tens of thousands of pro-Palestinian activists prepared to form a “people’s red line” around the White House in Washington DC on Saturday.

The Israeli rescue mission, deep into Nuseirat in central Gaza, was the largest rescue since the surprise October 7 attack by Hamas and other resistance fighters during which some 1,200 people were killed and about 250 taken hostage.

Israel launched a massive offensive that has killed more than 36,700 Palestinians with thousands more missing.

Of the 250 hostages, about half were released in a week-long ceasefire in November. 

About 120 hostages remain, with 43 having already been pronounced dead, seemingly largely as a result of Israeli fire.

Saturday’s operation brought the total number of rescued hostages to seven, including one who was freed shortly after the October attack. 

The Israeli government says the bodies of at least 16 others have been recovered.

The Gaza ministry said that nearly 700 people were wounded in Saturday’s raid which freed Noa Argamani, Almog Meir Jan, Andrey Kozlov and Shlomi Ziv.

After the raid, Karin Huster of Doctors Without Borders, working in al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital, said medics had to treat “kids completely grey or white from the shock, burnt, screaming for their parents. Many of them are not screaming because they are in shock.”

UN special rapporteur Francesca Albanese said that she was “relieved that four hostages have been released,” but said that it should not have come at the expense of the deaths of so many Palestinians killed “by Israeli and allegedly foreign soldiers, while perfidiously hiding in an aid truck.” 

She said: “This is genocidal intent turned into action.”

Reportedly United States troops were involved in the raid.

Journalist and activist Vijay Prashad accused US President Joe Biden of being a “terrorist” for allowing the Israelis to use a humanitarian pier “to sneak US troops in an aid truck” to carry out the attack. 

On Saturday, more than 75,000 activists surrounded the White House with the “People’s Red Line” to protest against Mr Biden’s continued support of Israel.

Layan Fuleihan, education director of The People’s Forum, one of the more than 200 sponsors of the protest, said: “The US boasts of itself as a global pillar of democracy and moral righteousness, but the people know this is a lie. It is time for them to be held responsible.”

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