Israeli army destroyed more than 200 archeological sites in Gaza: Report
GAZA, PALESTINE - JANUARY 07: The Israeli army has destroyed more than 200 archeological and ancient sites out of 325 that were registered across the Gaza Strip in the course of its devastating onslaught since Oct. 7, authorities in the enclave said.
Footage shows the Great Omari Mosque, churches, the Al-Zawiya market, and centuries-old gold bazaar in ruins after Israeli bombings.
The Gaza Media Office said the sites include ancient churches, mosques, schools and museums and other different historical and archeological sites and monuments.
"The ancient and archeological sites destroyed by the army date back to the Phoenician and Roman ages, others date back between 800 BC and 1,400, while others were built 400 years ago," it said in a statement.
The Great Omari Mosque, the Byzantine church in Jabalia, the Shrine of Al-Khadir in Deir al-Balah city in central Gaza Strip, and the Blakhiya Byzantine cemetery (The Anthedon of Palestine), northwestern Gaza City were among the sites.
It noted that other sites were severely damaged, including the Greek Orthodox Saint Porphyrius Church, the 400-year-old Al-Saqqa House and the Sayed al-Hashim Mosque, which is one of the oldest mosques in Gaza.
Geneva-based rights group, Euro-Med Monitor, said Nov. 20 that Israel deliberately destroyed archeological and historical monuments in the Gaza Strip, and accused it of "explicitly targeting Palestinian cultural heritage."
Gaza is an ancient and historic city that came under the rule of several empires and civilizations, including the Pharaohs, the Greeks, the Romans, the Byzantines then the Islamic age, among others.
The Israeli onslaught has left Gaza in ruins, with 60% of the enclave’s infrastructure damaged or destroyed and nearly 2 million residents displaced amid acute shortages of food, clean water, and medicines. (Footage by Bilal Salem/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)