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WorldIsrael-Gaza war: Netanyahu commands military to organise Rafah evacuations

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Israel-Gaza war: Netanyahu commands military to organise Rafah evacuations

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The leader of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu, has told the military to get ready to move people out of the southern Gaza city of Rafah before they attack Hamas.

Around 15 million Palestinians are in Rafah to find safety from fighting with Israel in other parts of Gaza.

The US told Israel that attacking Rafah would be very bad, and the EU and the UN are also worried.

Charities say they can’t rescue all the people from the city.

Mr Netanyahu asked the military and security leaders to come up with a plan to move people away and get rid of the groups of fighters from Hamas.

“We can’t win the war unless we get rid of Hamas and their four battalions in Rafah. ” Instead, it’s clear that there’s a lot of fighting in Rafah, so regular people need to leave the area.

Mr Netanyahu said he told soldiers to get ready to go to Rafah and that Israel will win over Hamas soon.

He said this while saying no to the terms Hamas offered for a ceasefire. Hamas negotiators are leaving Cairo, and talks between them and the BBC are paused.

Most of the people in Rafah had to leave their homes because of the fighting in other parts of Gaza. Now they are living in tents.

Rafah is the only place where people can enter or leave Gaza and go to Egypt.

On Friday, the leader of the European Union, Josep Borrell, said on social media that he is worried about reports of Israel attacking Rafah. This would have very bad effects, making the humanitarian situation even worse and causing more harm to civilians.

Earlier this week, the UN Secretary General António Guterres said that there could be a big problem with people needing help in the city. His spokesperson Stéphane Dujarric said later: “We are very concerned about what is happening to the regular people in Rafah. ” I believe it’s important to protect people, but we also don’t want to see anyone being forced to leave their homes.

At the same time, the leader of the UN agency for Palestinian refugees, UNRWA, said people in Rafah are feeling more and more anxious and scared.

“Philippe Lazzarini said that people don’t know where to go after Rafah,” he told reporters in Jerusalem.

“A big military operation in this area will just make things even more tragic. ”

Israeli planes bombed Gaza on Friday and at least 15 people died, including eight in Rafah, according to Hamas-run health officials. Israel didn’t say anything right away.

Garda al-Kourd, a mother with two children, said she had to move six times because of the war. She thinks Israel will attack, but she hopes for a peace agreement before it happens.

If they come to Rafah, it will be very bad for us. It will feel like we are waiting to die. “We have no other place to go,” she said to the BBC from a family member’s house in the city where she was living with 20 other people.

On Thursday, President Joe Biden said that Israel’s actions in Gaza were too much, without mentioning Rafah directly. He said the “over the top” phrase again to talk about how Hamas reacted to a truce plan for Gaza. Hamas was asked to release hostages in exchange for the truce.

John Kirby, a spokesperson for the US National Security Council, said that the Israeli military has a responsibility to protect innocent civilians during their operations in Gaza or anywhere else.

“He said that military operations at this time would be very bad for those people, and it’s not something that we would approve of. ”

Israeli officials say that more than 1,200 people were killed in the Hamas attacks on southern Israel on 7 October.

Israel started a war and more than 27,900 Palestinians were killed and at least 67,000 were hurt, according to the health ministry run by Hamas.

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