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August 21, 2014 6:59 am

Toronto Star Retracts Claim That Majority of Gaza Dead Were Women and Children

avatar by Shiryn Ghermezian

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A Toronto Star op-ed by Dr. Izzeldine Abuelaish. Photo: Screenshot.

A major Canadian newspaper recently issued a correction to an article it published which asserted that the majority of casualties in Israel’s current war against Hamas in Gaza were woman and children.

The Toronto Star published the piece by Palestinian doctor Dr. Izzeldine Abuelaish, who works in Canada, on July 30. He wrote, “At the moment of writing this article, some 1,359 Palestinians have lost their lives in the current conflict with Israel, mostly women and children, and some 7,677 have been severely wounded.”

Watchdog group Honest Reporting Canada called out the false figures and questioned Abuelaish’s credibility. The Star then added the following clarification notice to the column on its website:

Clarification: Aug. 5, 2015: This article was edited from a previous version that said the Palestineans killed in Gaza were ‘mostly’ women and children. In fact, as now stated, it was ‘many’ women and children killed. According to the Palestinian Centre for Human Rights, as of July 31, 2014, a reported 345 children and 186 women were among 1,432 dead, 85 per cent of them civilians. Among the civillian casualties, 43.5 per cent were women and children. Among the total number of Palestinians killed, 39.5 per cent were women and children.”

The Star has yet to publish the above clarification in its print edition, according to Honest Reporting Canada.

Other reports regarding civilian casualties in Gaza published by other news outlets, have varied considerably.

Al Jazeera, quoting the Hamas controlled Gaza Health Ministry, reported on July 26 that 315 children and 166 females were among 1,361 dead and 6,780 injured in the Gaza Strip. The New York Times then reported on Aug. 5 that, “According to data from the Palestinian Ministry of Health, 34 percent of those killed in Gaza from July 6-31 were children, women, elderly or female victims of an unknown age… since July 6: 429 under age 18, 79 over 60, 243 women.”

The BBC, citing a report from the office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, stated that as of Aug. 6, 1,843 Palestinians had been killed since the start of Operation Protective Edge. Among the civilians, more than three times as many men were killed as women, according to the UN report.

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