By Tom Miles GENEVA (Reuters) - Almost 100,000 boat people have made the dangerous journey across the Mediterranean to Europe this year, a roughly 60 percent increase on the whole of last year, and about 800 have died in the attempt, the U.N. refugee agency said on Thursday. More than 75,000 made the trip in the first six months of the year, landing up in Italy, Greece, Spain and Malta, the UNHCR agency said. The UNHCR also said that this year the numbers are accelerating: 21,000 have reached Italy since the beginning of July.
By Nidal al-Mughrabi and Dan Williams GAZA/JERUSALEM (Reuters) - Israeli forces shelled a U.N.-run school sheltering Palestinians in the northern Gaza strip, the Gaza health ministry said on Thursday, killing at least 15 people and raising the conflict's death toll to nearly 750. Israel Radio said, without citing a source, that most of those killed at the United Nations school were children. Ashraf al-Qidra, spokesman for the Gaza Health Ministry, said that as well as the 15 dead, another 200 people were wounded in the attack. More than 140,000 Palestinians have fled 17 days of fighting between Israel and Gaza militants, many of them seeking shelter in buildings run by the U.N. Refugee Works Agency (UNWRA).