The people of Gaza who died under the debris of their houses, during the barbaric Israeli strikes, should be washed and funeral prayers should be performed for them. In sha’ Allah they will receive the reward of martyrs in the Hereafter. Thus, we ask Almighty Allah to give the degree of martyrdom to everyone who was killed in this Israeli massacre.
Sheikh `Abdul-Majeed Subh, a prominent Azharite scholar, states: There are two categories of martyrs in Gaza as follows: 1. Those who fell as martyrs in the battlefield: They should not be washed or enshrouded and the funeral prayer should not be offered for them. They should be buried in their clothes. It was narrated that the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings be upon him) said regarding the martyrs who died on the Day of Uhud: “Bury them in their clothes.” (Ahmad)
The traces of their martyrdom have to be left on them, for it was narrated that the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) said: “By the One in Whose hand is my soul, no one is wounded for the sake of Allah – and Allah knows best who is wounded for His sake – but on the Day of Judgment he will come with a color like the color of blood and a fragrance like the fragrance of musk.” (Al-Bukhari)
2. Civilians who died under the debris of their houses or because of their wounds due to the Zionist bombardment: They are given the reward of martyrdom in the Hereafter but the rules of martyrdom do not apply to them in this world. Such people should be washed and the funeral prayer should be offered for them, but in the Hereafter they will have the reward of the martyrs, In sha’ Allah.
However, if it is difficult to wash some dead bodies due to decay or because the body is in pieces, we still have to perform dry ablution (tayammum) for them if it is possible.
Also, the eminent Muslim scholar and renowned Da`iyah, Sheikh `Abdel Khaliq Hasan Ash-Shareef, adds: Almighty Allah says in the Qur’an, (Think not of those, who are slain in the way of Allah, as dead. Nay, they are living. With their Lord they have provision. Jubilant (are they) because of that which Allah hath bestowed upon them of His bounty, rejoicing for the sake of those who have not joined them but are left behind: That there shall no fear come upon them neither shall they grieve.They rejoice because of favour from Allah and kindness, and that Allah wasteth not the wage of the believers.) (Aal `Imran 3: 169-171)
All of those who died because of the oppressive Zionist aggression are to be considered, as far as I believe, as martyrs. They were killed by the enemies of Almighty Allah in a fierce and brutal war. However, this is a general rule and we do not specify certain persons as martyrs, since Almighty Allah is the only One who knows those who died sincerely for His cause.
As far as Shari`ah is concerned, we should wash, enshroud, and perform funeral prayers for those who died under the debris of their houses.