Despite international opposition, Israeli army set to invade Rafah in Gaza

Despite international opposition, Israeli army set to invade Rafah in Gaza

Army plans to invade Rafah, where more than 1.4 million people have taken refuge from Israel’s ongoing war on Gaza Strip

By Anadolu staff

JERUSALEM (AA) – Despite growing international opposition, an Israeli military commander said Thursday the army will invade Rafah city as part of Tel Aviv’s ongoing offensive in the Gaza Strip.

The army withdrew from the Nuseirat refugee camp in the central Gaza Strip on Wednesday following an 8-day raid, leaving behind several people dead and a trail of destruction.

“We are going to Rafah,” Army Radio quoted the commander of the 932nd Battalion, who was identified as Dotan, as he addressed his soldiers on the outskirts of the Nuseirat refugee camp.

“The people of Israel rely on you to do the best you can in Rafah as well,” he added.

The Israeli army has unveiled plans to invade Rafah, where more than 1.4 million people have taken refuge from Israel’s ongoing war on the Palestinian enclave, despite opposition from several countries, including the US.

Israel has waged a deadly military offensive on the Gaza Strip since an Oct. 7, 2023 cross-border attack by the Palestinian group Hamas in which nearly 1,200 people were killed.

At least 33,900 Palestinians, mostly women and children, have since been killed in Gaza, and over 76,600 others injured amid mass destruction and shortages of necessities.

The Israeli war has pushed 85% of Gaza’s population into internal displacement amid acute shortages of food, clean water and medicine, while 60% of the enclave's infrastructure has been damaged or destroyed, according to the UN.

Israel stands accused of genocide at the International Court of Justice. An interim ruling in January ordered Tel Aviv to stop genocidal acts and take measures to guarantee that humanitarian assistance is provided to civilians in Gaza.

*Writing by Rania Abu Shamala in Istanbul

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