World leaders warn Israel ahead of expected Rafah attack

Global protests are growing over Israel’s call for a “large-scale operation” in the southern Gaza city of Rafah, where more than 1 million people have fled seeking refuge as Israel continues bombarding the strip.

“I am deeply concerned about the possibility of a military offensive in Rafah,” British Foreign Secretary David Cameron said in a social media post on Saturday. statementSaying that the priority should be an immediate stop to “getting aid in and evacuating the hostages” before working towards a permanent ceasefire.

In a statement the same day, Saudi Arabia said an urgent UN Security Council meeting was needed in Rafah “to prevent Israel from creating an imminent humanitarian disaster.”

Young Israelis blocking aid to Gaza while IDF soldiers stand by and watch

EU foreign affairs chief Josep Borrell, Scotland’s First Minister Hamza Youssef and Germany’s foreign ministry all warned that Israel’s threatened actions in Rafah would be devastating for those seeking refuge in the border town with nowhere to go. there is no place.

On Friday, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office announced that the country’s military was preparing a plan to evacuate civilians from Rafah and destroy Hamas battalions in the area. Biden administration officials have said they oppose any Israeli operation in Rafah under the current circumstances, and President Biden said Thursday that Israel’s military operation in Gaza was “over the top” — his sharpest rebuke yet. .

Aid groups say the ground campaign in Rafah will significantly worsen the desperate humanitarian situation in the besieged area. Amnesty International has warned that if Israel’s expulsion order is implemented, it “could amount to the crime of forced transfer.”

“Not only will more civilians die, but access to essential services such as food distribution, health clinics and mental health support will also be cut off, exacerbating inhumane conditions for more than a million people,” said Chesa Latifi, deputy director of emergency preparedness. and response to Project Hope, a statement said.

What else is there to know here

Israel targets a senior Hamas figure inside Lebanese territory in a strike But on Saturday, according to an Israeli security official who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss the operation. The target, Hamas recruiter Bassel Saleh, survived the attack but at least two others were killed, the official said.

Israeli army said it happened a tunnel discovered Used by Hamas which passes beneath UNRWA’s main Gaza City headquarters. Philip Lazzarini, head of the support group, Said A statement said Israel had not formally informed the agency about the discovery and that UNRWA was not aware of any tunnel infrastructure beneath the complex, which was evacuated on 12 October. The organization is in crisis after Israel alleged that about a dozen of its employees played a role in Hamas’ October 7 attacks.

One in every 100 people in Gaza died in the first 100 days of the war, more than in any other armed conflict in the 21st century. According to the United Nations Commission. The United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia said, “The scale of death, destruction and suffering of the ongoing war is unprecedented, with consequences that will reverberate for generations to come.”

Body of 6-year-old Hind Rajab, missing for 12 days after losing contact with rescue workers, found The Palestinian Red Crescent Society said on Saturday that the car had been found after his family car was shot at in Gaza. The ambulance sent to reach him was also fired upon and two paramedics inside were killed. Hind, the only survivor of the attack in Gaza City, reached emergency dispatchers by phone on January 29 and pleaded for hours to be rescued.

At least 28,064 people have been killed and 67,611 injured in Gaza According to the Gaza Health Ministry, since the war began. Israel estimates that about 1,200 people were killed in Hamas’ October 7 attack.

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