The Israeli army presents a plan to the military cabinet to evacuate Gaza residents from “combat zones”

Tel Aviv, Israel

The IDF submitted a plan to the War Cabinet to “evacuate the population” from the area Gaza From the combat zones, amid warnings of an imminent attack on the city of Rafah in the south of the country.

Earlier this month, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office said it had ordered the Israeli army to develop a plan to evacuate civilians from Rafah, where more than 1,000 civilians are located. A million people crowded together.

Netanyahu's office said a “plan for future operations” was submitted for approval on Monday, although Monday's statement did not mention Rafah by name. CNN has not seen a copy of the plan.

Concerns are growing in Gaza and throughout the international community about the Israeli army's planned attack on Rafah, which lies next to the closed border with Egypt.

The city has become home to the majority of displaced Palestinians as the Israeli army advances south through the enclave, but these civilians appear to have nowhere else to flee.

Ahmed Hasaballah/Getty Images

Israel is already targeting Rafah with almost daily air strikes, while preparing for a ground attack in the city.

The United States warned that it would not support a campaign on the city without it A “credible” plan. To evacuate the Palestinians.

A statement from Netanyahu's office on Monday said the cabinet also approved a plan to provide humanitarian aid to Gaza “in a way that prevents the looting that occurred in the northern Strip and other areas.”

The Israeli leader pledged to press ahead with efforts in Rafah during an interview with CBS' “Face the Nation” on Sunday.

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Netanyahu said: “We cannot leave the last stronghold of Hamas without taking care of it,” adding that the last “stronghold of leadership” of Hamas is located in Rafah, where four command battalions are stationed. CNN cannot independently verify these numbers.

He told the program that once Israel begins the Rafah operation, the intense phase of the fighting will be weeks away from ending, not months or weeks away from ending.

He indicated that he asked the Israeli army to present a “double plan.” One “to enable the evacuation of Palestinian civilians in Gaza,” and the other “to destroy the remaining Hamas brigades.”

“If we reach an agreement, it will be somewhat delayed. But it will happen,” Netanyahu said, referring to a possible agreement that would see a humanitarian truce in Gaza and the release of Israeli hostages held by Hamas. “If we don’t have an agreement, we will In any case. “It has to be done,” he said.

White House National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan told CNN on Sunday that negotiators had reached an “understanding” on the broad outlines of a potential agreement, and talks were continuing in Qatar on Monday.

These negotiations come even as indirect discussions with Hamas continue. More importantly, Hamas has not yet signed on to this potential framework, and any potential final agreement is still days away, at the earliest, as negotiators continue to hammer out the actual details.

“Representatives of Israel, the United States, Egypt and Qatar met in Paris and reached an understanding between the four countries on the basic form of a hostage deal for a temporary ceasefire. “I will not go into details about that because it is still under negotiation regarding the status of its details.”

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He added: “There must be indirect discussions between Qatar and Egypt with Hamas, because in the end they will have to agree to the release of the hostages.” This work is underway, Sullivan added. “We hope that in the coming days we can reach a point where there is already a firm and final agreement on this issue. But we will have to wait and see.”

The United Nations Secretary-General said on Monday that a comprehensive Israeli attack on Rafah would be “the final nail in the coffin” of UN aid operations in the besieged Palestinian territories, in comments that could lead to escalation of tensions between the organization and Israel.

Speaking before the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, António Guterres said the Rafah crossing is the “core” of the humanitarian aid operation in Gaza, and described the United Nations Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees (UNRWA) as “the backbone of this effort.”

An attack on the city “would not only be terrifying to the more than a million Palestinian civilians taking shelter there; He said that this would put the final nail in the coffin of the aid programs we provide.

Guterres also reiterated his call for a humanitarian ceasefire and the “immediate and unconditional” release of all hostages.

The Secretary-General said that Hamas' attacks on Israeli civilians and “collective punishment” of the Palestinian people cannot be justified, adding that under international humanitarian law, “violations by one party do not absolve the other party from compliance.”

Last week, the CEO of CARE America, which has aid workers inside the Strip, told CNN: “There are a lot of lives at stake” in Rafah as the Israeli attack approaches.

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“They (the Palestinians) are desperately hoping and praying that there will not be an invasion in Rafah, which I think we all realize would be devastating,” Michelle Nunn said. “One of the differences in this crisis is that you can't get out of it.”

She added that many of those displaced from their homes “feel like they are at the end of the line and have nowhere else to go.” “The kind of horror people are facing is truly unbearable.”

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