Gaza has been left largely isolated off from the outside world after Israel cut communications lines to the territory on Friday night.
Some 2.3 million people within Gaza now have no access to internet and are unable to make phone calls, according to the Palestinian telecom provider Paltel, as the Israeli Defence Force (IDF) stepped up its ground offensive.
Gaza’s one power station shut down soon after war broke out on 7 October, with humanitarian agencies warning food and fuel would soon run out and hospitals collapse.
A Sky News producer in Gaza sent this voice note on Saturday morning following heavy bombing and raids overnight.
We don’t know how things are outside.
We couldn’t even check how our families are in Gaza – if they survived the night or they were bombed because they cut the communication and the telephone lines.
It makes the ambulance and the civil defence unable to reach any calls for bombing or people injured.
They don’t know anything. They don’t know what to do. They don’t know where to go because there are no [phone] lines at all.
They’re working blindly.
I think with the morning light people will go and check on each other to see how the situation is.
World Health Organisation loses touch with workers
The World Health Organisation has confirmed that Palestinian ambulances are largely unable to operate due to the blackout.
According to one Al Jazeera correspondent in Gaza, people have been left to transport the injured and dead in cars.
WHO’s director-general Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said on Sunday it had lost contact with its staff and health facilities.
Humanitarian agencies, including the Red Cross and Doctors Without Borders, have consistently warned of Israel’s blockade of Gaza.
The IDF says aid deliveries could be hijacked by Hamas and the blockade is justified after the atrocities since 7 October.
So far more than 7,300 Palestinians have been killed, according to Palestinian health authorities. The IDF says more than 1,400 people have been killed in Israel.
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