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Gaza children return to schools

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MIDEAST-GAZA-AIRSTRIKESchools reopened across the Gaza Strip Sunday following a three-week delay due to damage caused by an Israeli offensive on the enclave that ended late last month.

As many as 700,000 school children went back to their schools at the end of a long summer vacation, which included 50 days of the Israeli war on the Gaza Strip, Xinhua quoted a Palestinian education ministry statement as saying.

“Twenty-four schools were badly damaged and 125 were partially damaged by Israeli bombs,” said the statement.

“We are doing all our best to resolve the problem of displaced people who took refuge in schools,” it added.

During the 50-day Israeli air, sea and ground offensive, around 20,000 constructions and housing units were destroyed by Israeli tanks shells and jet bombs and missiles, officials said.

Heavy shelling prompted thousands of residents to take shelter in schools run by the UN Relief and Work Agency (UNRWA).

The UNRWA said in a statement that all its schools in the Gaza Strip received school children except in the northern Gaza Strip town of Beit Hanoun, where 10 schools in the town still shelters displaced residents.