Israel Strikes Gaza as Troops Advance into Central Rafah

News Desk3 weeks ago

Early in May, Israel began its military incursion into Rafah in defiance of concerns from around the world regarding the security of residents seeking refuge in the city along Gaza’s border with Egypt.

A strike that broke out at a displacement camp over the weekend, killing scores, brought yet another round of censure.

Israeli attacks on Friday reportedly struck the Rafah region and Nuseirat in central Gaza, according to witnesses. An AFP correspondent also reported heavy bombardment in the northern region.

Strikes on two separate locations killed a total of 11 people overnight, medical sources at a hospital in Deir al-Balah and the Nuseirat refugee camp reported.

The Israeli military reported that rocket launchers, weaponry, and “tunnel shafts” had been discovered in the city center while their forces “continued… operational activities” in the Rafah area.

It further stated that a militant in that region was “targeted and eliminated” by an airstrike.

More airstrikes in central Gaza “eliminated several terrorists who operated near” troops, the military reported without providing more details.

Israel, which has repeatedly vowed to destroy Hamas after the Palestinian fighter group attacked southern Israel on October 7, said on Wednesday its forces had taken over the 14-kilometre (8.5-mile) Philadelphi corridor along the Gaza-Egypt border, where it alleges weapons were being smuggled.

Long-standing dispute mediator Egypt has not yet provided an official statement on the Israeli seizure, despite earlier claims by officials that it may violate the terms of the 1979 peace agreement between the two nations.

Hamas said it had told mediators that it would only agree to a “comprehensive” truce accord that included a hostage-prisoner swap if Israel halted its “aggression” amid delayed diplomatic talks towards a ceasefire.

Israel announced on Thursday that since the start of its military operation in Rafah, its forces had killed over 300 Palestinians there.

A steady flow of citizens left Rafah, carrying their possessions in automobiles, in donkey-drawn carts, or on their shoulders.

 

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