Success! After HRC Complaint, Toronto Star Corrects Article Which Falsely Stated 35,000 Palestinian Civilians Killed In Gaza

May 2, 2024

On May 1, the Toronto Star published an article entitled “Netanyahu’s choice: Israeli PM can free Israeli hostages or save his political skin — but likely not both“, which spoke about the ongoing attempts by Israel to save the remaining hostages in Gaza, which were taken by Hamas terrorists on October 7 during their massacres in southern Israel.

Within the article, reporter Allan Woods egregiously stated that “Palestinian health officials in Gaza say Israel’s subsequent military operations have killed nearly 35,000 civilians since Oct. 7.” Concerningly, if an unknowing reader were only to read this article and nothing more, the reader would be left with the false impression that all deaths in Gaza are civilian related when nothing is further from the truth.

Not mentioned in the article, but incredibly important for context, is the fact that the Gaza Health Ministry (AKA Hamas) does not distinguish between combatant and civilian deaths or those killed by Israel or by errant Palestinian rockets. Also not mentioned is the fact that Israel says close to 14,000 of the dead are Hamas fighters/Palestinian terrorists.

On top of this, Abraham Wyner, a professor of Statistics and Data Science at the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania, recently penned a report where he pointed out that Hamas’ casualty numbers don’t add up from a statistical perspective, rendering any claim made by Hamas extraordinarily unlikely to be true.

Accordingly, HRC lodged a complaint with the Toronto Star, expressing our concern that this statement should be immediately corrected in the interests of fairness and accuracy, and we are pleased to report that the article has now been updated and says “Palestinian health officials in Gaza say Israel’s subsequent military operations have killed nearly 35,000 Palestinians since Oct. 7.”

We thank the Star for taking this corrective action.

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