Islamic University of Gaza Hit by Israeli Airstrikes Amid Escalating Conflict

Palestine Israel Asia Higher Education News by Erudera News Oct 11, 2023

Bombing in Gaza, Palestine

The Islamic University of Gaza was damaged by Israeli airstrikes on Wednesday, October 11, amid the intense conflict between Israel and the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas.

It is the fifth day of the ongoing conflict between Israel and Hamas, reports.

According to the Israeli military, the university was transformed into a significant operational, political, and military center for Hamas.

In a Twitter post, the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) said that Hamas had transformed the institution into a facility for weapon development and military intelligence.

In a recent press release, the university confirmed that parts of the buildings have been destroyed.

“Large parts of the buildings of the Islamic University of Gaza were subjected to major damage and severe material losses. The building of the College of Information Technology, the building of the Deanship of Community Service and Continuing Education, and the building of the university’s College of Science were all exposed to damage,” the Islamic University of Gaza said in a statement released on October 10.

The conflict between Hamas and Israel began on Saturday morning, October 7, after Hamas launched a massive attack on Israel that left more than 1,200 dead, thousands others injured, and hundreds of people taken hostage.

In response to attacks, Israel formally declared war on Hamas, launching attacks on targeted facilities in the Gaza Strip. Israel’s response also included banning water and electricity supplies to Gaza, further exacerbating the already difficult living conditions.

Among the victims are 11 international students reported dead, ten of them from Nepal. Three students who were enrolled at three universities in Palestine, Birzeit University, Palestine Technical University, and Palestine Ahliya University, had also been killed.

Hamas seized control of Gaza in 2007 after winning the elections in Palestine one year earlier.

The Islamic university was established in 1978 and is one of the largest universities in Gaza - the largest city in the Gaza Strip. The school has been offering programs in various disciplines, including arts, engineering, law, and medical sciences.

The university has 11 faculties: medicine, nursing, health science, engineering, information technology, science, arts, Sharia and law, fundamentals of religion, commerce, and education.

It also has partnerships with 142 higher education institutions across the globe, including Marmara University in Turkey, the University of Glasgow in the United Kingdom, and the University of Graz in Austria.

Data indicate there are nearly 20,000 students enrolled at the Islamic University of Gaza, the majority females.

© Mohammed Ibrahim | Unsplash

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