May 24, 2024

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The war between Israel and Hamas: Israel orders new evacuations in Rafah

The war between Israel and Hamas: Israel orders new evacuations in Rafah

RAFAH (Gaza Strip) – Israel ordered new evacuations in the southern Gaza city of Rafah on Saturday, forcing tens of thousands of people to leave as it prepares to expand its military operation deeper into what is seen as a last resort in Gaza, in defiance of a growing escalation. Pressure from its close ally, the United States and others.

like Pro-Palestinian protests continued vs the warThe Israeli military also said it was moving into a devastated area in northern Gaza where it confirmed the Hamas militant group had regrouped after seven months of fighting.

Israel has now evacuated the eastern third of Rafah, and chief military spokesman Admiral Daniel Hagari said dozens of militants were killed there as “targeted operations continue.” The United Nations has warned that a large-scale invasion of Rafah is planned as well Further paralyzing humanitarian operations Causing a high number of civilian deaths.

The Rafah crossing on the border with Egypt is located near the main aid entry points that have already been affected. The Israeli forces did Captured the Gaza side Rafah crossing, which led to its closure. The state-owned Cairo News Channel, citing an unnamed official, reported that Egypt refused to coordinate with Israel regarding the delivery of aid through the crossing due to the “unacceptable Israeli escalation.”

US President Joe Biden said that he would not provide offensive weapons to Israel in Rafah. His administration said on Friday that there was a “reasonable” Evidence that Israel violated international law Protection of Civilians – Washington’s strongest statement to date on this matter.

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In response, Ofir Falk, foreign policy advisor to the Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin NetanyahuHe told The Associated Press that Israel acts in accordance with the laws of armed conflict, and the military takes wide-ranging measures to avoid civilian casualties, including alerting people to military operations via phone calls and text messages.

more than 1.4 million Palestinians Half of Gaza’s population – half the population – has taken refuge in Rafah, most of them after fleeing Israeli attacks elsewhere. The latest evacuations are forcing some to return to the north, where areas have been devastated by previous attacks. Aid agencies estimate that 110,000 people had left before Saturday’s order, which adds 40,000 people.

“Should we wait until we all die on top of each other? We have decided to leave,” said Hanan Al-Satri, a Rafah resident, as people rushed to load mattresses, water tanks and other belongings onto vehicles.

“The Israeli army does not have a safe zone in Gaza. “They target everything,” said Abu Youssef Al-Deiri, who was previously displaced from Gaza City.

Many people have been displaced multiple times. There are a few places left to go. Some Palestinians are being sent to what Israel calls safe humanitarian zones along the Mawasi coastal strip, which is already crowded with about 450,000 people living in squalid conditions.

Georgios Petropoulos, of the UN humanitarian agency in Rafah, said aid workers did not have supplies to help people settle in new locations.

“We simply have no tents, no blankets, no bedding,” he said.

The World Food Program said the food to be distributed in southern Gaza would run out by Saturday, Petropoulos said, another challenge as parts of Gaza face what the World Food Program chief described as “Total famine.” Aid groups said fuel would soon run out, forcing hospitals to halt vital operations.

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Fierce battles also took place in northern Gaza, where Hajjari said the Air Force was launching air strikes. Palestinians in Jabalia, Beit Lahia and surrounding areas were told to leave for shelters in western Gaza City, and were warned that Israel would strike with “great force.”

Northern Gaza was the first target of the Israeli ground offensive that began after Hamas and other militants attacked southern Israel on October 7, killing about 1,200 people, most of them civilians, and taking 250 others hostage. They still hold about 100 prisoners and the remains of more than 30. Hamas said on Saturday that hostage Nadav Popplewell died after being wounded in an Israeli air strike a month ago, but did not provide any evidence.

Israeli bombing and ground attacks led to the deaths of more than 34,800 Palestinians, most of them women and children, according to the Gaza Ministry of Health, which does not distinguish between civilians and combatants in its numbers. Israel blames Hamas for civilian casualties, and accuses it of being present in densely populated residential areas.

Civilian authorities in Gaza provided more details about the mass graves that the Ministry of Health announced earlier in Al-Shifa Hospital, the largest in northern Gaza and which was the target of a previous Israeli attack. Authorities said most of the 80 bodies of patients died due to lack of care. The Israeli army said, “Any attempt to blame Israel for burying civilians in mass graves is completely false.”

At least 19 people, including eight women and eight children, were killed overnight in central Gaza in air strikes that hit Al-Zawaida, Al-Maghazi and Deir Al-Balah, according to Al-Aqsa Martyrs Hospital and an AP journalist who counted the bodies.

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“Children, what is the fault of the children who died?” A relative said. A woman hit one of the children in the face who was lying on the ground.

Another round of ceasefire talks in Cairo earlier this week ended without a breakthrough, after Israel rejected the agreement, which Hamas said it had accepted.

Tens of thousands of people attended the latest anti-government protest in Israel on Saturday evening amid mounting pressure on Netanyahu to reach an agreement.

Demonstrator Kobi Ishaqi said: “I believe that the (Rafah) operation is not intended for hostages and is not intended for killing Hamas, but rather is intended for one thing only, which is to save the government.”

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Sam Madanek reported from Tel Aviv and Sami Magdy from Cairo. Jack Jeffrey contributed to this story from Jerusalem.

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Follow AP’s coverage of the war on https://apnews.com/hub/israel-hamas-war