People in Gaza have described begging for bread, paying 50 times more than usual for a single can of beans and slaughtering a donkey to feed a family as food aid trucks were unable to reach most parts of the bombarded Palestinian territory.

Israel has been pounding the length of the Gaza Strip in pursuit of its goal of destroying Hamas, the conflict making it almost impossible for aid convoys to move around and reach people going hungry.

The U.N. humanitarian office OCHA said on Thursday that limited aid distributions were taking place in the Rafah area, close to the border with Egypt, where almost half of Gaza's population of 2.3 million is now estimated to be living.