- The latest developments
- UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs spokesman Jens Laerke said services in Gaza were approaching “breaking point” without fuel supplies, adding that none of the 569 aid trucks that had arrived in the Strip so far were carrying fuel.
- The Ministry of Interior in the Gaza Strip announced on Tuesday that all bakeries in northern Gaza are out of service due to Israeli attacks and fuel shortages.
GAZA/JERUSALEM (Reuters) – Israel gave civilians still trapped inside its recently cordoned off Gaza City a four-hour deadline to leave on Tuesday, and residents fleeing the city said they had passed tanks in position to storm it.
Israel says that its forces are besieging Gaza City, which is inhabited by a third of the Strip’s population of 2.3 million people, and are preparing to attack it soon as part of its campaign to eliminate Hamas, which attacked Israeli towns exactly a month ago.
In some of the first direct comments on Israel’s plans for Gaza’s post-war future, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel would assume security responsibility for the Strip for an indefinite period once the militants who have controlled it for 16 years are defeated. Years.
The war began on October 7, when fighters stormed the fence surrounding Gaza, killing 1,400 Israelis, most of them civilians, and kidnapping more than 200, according to Israeli statistics. Since then, Israel has bombarded the Hamas-run Gaza Strip with air strikes, killing more than 10,000 people, about 40 percent of them children, according to statistics from health officials there.
UN Human Rights Commissioner Volker Türk said in a statement at the beginning of a tour of the region during which he visited the Rafah crossing, “An entire month has passed of massacre, continuous suffering, bloodshed, destruction, anger and despair.” Crossing from Egypt, the only way for aid.
Israel gave residents a deadline from 10:00 in the morning until 2:00 in the afternoon to leave Gaza City. Residents say Israeli tanks mostly move at night, and Israeli forces rely largely on air and artillery strikes to pave the way for their ground advance.
“For your safety, take this next opportunity to move south beyond Wadi Gaza,” the army announced, referring to the wetlands that divide the Strip.
A still image taken from an Israeli military video showed what the army said were Palestinians carrying white flags as they moved south in a line. Hamas said the army forced the people who appeared in the video to behave in this way to humiliate them.
The Gaza Interior Ministry says 900,000 Palestinians still reside in northern Gaza, including Gaza City.
“The most dangerous trip in my life. We saw tanks from a close distance. We saw decomposing body parts. We saw death,” resident Adam Fayez Ziara wrote as he took a selfie of himself on the road outside Gaza City.
While the Israeli military operation focused on the northern half of Gaza, the south was also attacked. Palestinian health officials said that at least 23 people were killed in two separate Israeli air strikes early Tuesday morning on the cities of Khan Yunis and Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip.
“We are civilians,” said Ahmed Ayesh, who was rescued from the rubble of a house in Khan Yunis, where health officials said 11 people were killed. “This is the courage of the so-called Israel, they are showing their strength and power against the civilians, the children inside, the children inside, the elderly.”
As he spoke, rescuers at the home used their hands to try to free a girl buried up to her waist in rubble.
Netanyahu said Israel would consider “small tactical pauses” in the fighting in Gaza to allow hostages to leave or aid to enter, but he again rejected calls for a ceasefire.
In response to a question about who will be responsible for security in Gaza after the defeat of Hamas, Netanyahu told ABC News: “I think that Israel will bear, for an indefinite period, comprehensive security responsibility because we have seen what happens when we do not have that responsibility.” Security responsibility.
The Israeli military said it had taken control of a militant compound in the northern Gaza Strip and was preparing to attack fighters hiding in a group of underground tunnels. Footage was published showing the forces using bulldozers to dig the ground and demolish the walls.
Israeli Lieutenant Colonel Richard Hecht told reporters that Hamas fighters were “emerging” from the tunnels to fire rocket-propelled grenades at Israeli forces.
“So we are making a real effort to eliminate these tunnels as we advance and approach Gaza City,” he said.
The Israeli army said that Israeli aircraft bombed a number of Hamas activists who barricaded themselves in a building near Al-Quds Hospital inside Gaza City.
Both Israel and Hamas rejected calls to stop the fighting. Israel says the hostages must be released first. Hamas says it will not release them or stop the fighting while attacking Gaza.
“My children… have done nothing wrong.”
Relentless horror stories of civilian suffering on both sides have polarized global opinion over the past month.
In Shefayim, Israel, Avihai Prodoch described 31 days of agony after Hamas kidnapped his wife and three children from Kibbutz Kfar Azza, three kilometers from Gaza.
“My children, they are very young, and they have never done anything wrong to anyone,” he said of his 10-year-old daughter, Ofri, and his two sons, Yuval, eight, and Uriah, four.
Since last week, hundreds of Gazans holding foreign passports have been allowed to exit through the Rafah crossing into Egypt. But the vast majority of Gazans are trapped inside the Strip, and those who have managed to escape describe their agony at leaving their loved ones behind.
“It’s just a horror movie that keeps repeating itself,” Susan Bseiso, 31, a Palestinian-American who was able to leave Gaza for Egypt last week, told Reuters in Cairo. “No sleep, no food, no water. You keep evacuating from one place to another.”
Netanyahu said that a general ceasefire would hinder his country’s war effort, but that a halt to the fighting could continue to be studied for humanitarian reasons based on the circumstances.
The White House said that US President Joe Biden discussed such stops by phone on Monday with Netanyahu, stressing support for Israel while stressing that it must protect civilians.
Washington supports Israel’s assertion that Hamas will take advantage of the complete ceasefire to reorganize its ranks. But many countries say an immediate ceasefire is necessary to help vulnerable Gazans.
The United Nations Office for Humanitarian Affairs said on Tuesday that services in Gaza are nearing “breaking point” without fuel supplies. The Ministry of Interior in the Gaza Strip announced on Tuesday that all bakeries in northern Gaza are out of service due to Israeli attacks and fuel shortages.
There are fears that the month-long conflict could spread to other fronts, including the Israeli-occupied West Bank and the northern border with Lebanon, both areas that have seen unrest escalate to the bloodiest levels in many years.
In the occupied West Bank, the Palestinian Ministry of Health said on Tuesday that 163 Palestinians had been killed by Israeli forces there since October 7.
(Reporting by Nidal al-Mughrabi in Gaza, Emily Rose in Gaza, Patricia Zengerle in Washington, Michelle Nichols at the United Nations, and Amina Ismail in Cairo – Prepared by Muhammad Al-Yamani for the Arab Bulletin – Prepared by Muhammad Al-Yamani for the Arab Bulletin) Writing by Daphne Psalidakis, Lincoln Feast and William MacLean. Edited by Rami Ayoub, Cynthia Osterman, Simon Cameron-Moore, Peter Graff
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