The Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has assured a “safe corridor” for civilians in the city of Rafah in the southern part of the Gaza Strip. He stated that a detailed plan for the evacuation of more than one million Palestinians in the city was being drawn up.
The US government has spoken out against a military operation in Rafah, stating that it would be a catastrophe for the people in the area. UN Secretary-General António Guterres also warned of a humanitarian catastrophe and consequences for the entire region, as half of the Gaza Strip’s population is crammed into Rafah and has nowhere else to go. Egypt is concerned about a rush of desperate Palestinians to the Sinai Peninsula if a massive military operation takes place in Rafah.
Netanyahu ordered the Israeli army to prepare for an offensive on Rafah, stating that it is impossible to achieve the war goal of eliminating Hamas if four Hamas battalions remain in Rafah. He also stated that victory was “within reach.”
Israel responded with air strikes and a ground offensive after terrorists from Hamas and other extremist groups carried out a massacre in southern Israel. The Gaza war was triggered by this event, leading to widespread destruction and displacement among Palestinian families.