Medics Say New Israeli Strikes Kill 16 In Rafah Amid Escalation Of Combating

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DEIR AL-BALAH, Gaza Strip (AP) — New Israeli strikes on Rafah have killed no less than 16 Palestinians, first responders stated Tuesday, as residents reported an escalation of combating within the southern Gaza metropolis as soon as seen because the territory’s final refuge.

An Israeli incursion launched in early Might has brought about practically 1 million to flee from Rafah, most of whom had already been displaced in the warfare between Israel and Hamas. They now search refuge in squalid tent camps and different war-ravaged areas.

The USA and different shut allies of Israel have warned towards a full-fledged offensive within the metropolis, with the Biden administration saying that might cross a pink line and refusing to supply offensive arms for such an endeavor. On Friday, the Worldwide Court docket of Justice known as on Israel to halt its Rafah offensive, an order it has no energy to implement.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has vowed to press forward, saying Israeli forces should enter Rafah to dismantle Hamas and return hostages taken in the Oct. 7 assault that triggered the warfare.

The most recent strikes occurred in the identical space the place Israel focused what it stated was a Hamas compound on Sunday night time. That strike ignited a hearth in a camp for displaced Palestinians and killed no less than 45 folks, in line with native well being officers, sparking worldwide outrage.

Netanyahu known as it a “tragic mishap” and the navy stated it was investigating.

The brand new strikes in a single day killed a complete of 16 folks within the Tel al-Sultan neighborhood in northwest Rafah, in line with the Palestinian Civil Protection and the Palestinian Pink Crescent.

Israel says it’s finishing up restricted operations in japanese Rafah alongside the Gaza-Egypt border. However residents reported heavy bombardment in a single day in western components of Rafah as nicely.

“It was a night of horror,” stated Abdel-Rahman Abu Ismail, a Palestinian from Gaza Metropolis who has been sheltering in Tel al-Sultan since December. He stated he heard “constant sounds” of explosions in a single day and into Tuesday, with fighter jets and drones flying over the realm.

He stated it reminded him of the Israeli invasion of his neighborhood of Shijaiyah in Gaza Metropolis, the place Israel launched a heavy bombing marketing campaign earlier than sending in floor forces in late 2023. “We saw this before,” he stated.

Sayed al-Masri, a Rafah resident, stated many households have been pressured to flee their properties and shelters, with most heading for the crowded Muwasi space, the place large tent camps have been arrange on a barren shoreline, or to Khan Younis, a southern metropolis that suffered heavy injury throughout months of combating.

“The situation is worsening” in Rafah, al-Masri stated.

Displaced Palestinians examine their tents destroyed by Israel’s bombardment, adjunct to an UNRWA facility west of Rafah metropolis, Gaza Strip, on Might 28, 2024.

Jehad Alshrafi by way of Related Press

Gaza’s Health Ministry stated two medical amenities in Tel al-Sultan are out of service due to intense bombing close by. Medical Help for Palestinians, a charity working all through the territory, stated the Tel al-Sultan medical heart and the Indonesian Area Hospital had been below lockdown, with medics, sufferers and displaced folks trapped inside.

Most of Gaza’s hospitals are not functioning. The Kuwait Hospital in Rafah shut down Monday after a strike close to its entrance killed two well being employees.

A spokesperson for the World Health Group stated the casualties from Sunday’s strike and fireplace “absolutely overwhelmed” subject hospitals within the space, which had been already operating brief on provides to deal with extreme burns.

“That requires intensive care, that requires electricity, that requires high-level medical services,” Dr. Margaret Harris instructed reporters in Geneva. “Increasingly, we are struggling to even have the high-level skilled doctors and nurses because they’ve been displaced.”

The warfare started when Hamas and different militants burst into southern Israel in a shock assault on Oct. 7, killing some 1,200 civilians and abducting round 250. Greater than 100 had been launched throughout a weeklong cease-fire in November in change for Palestinians imprisoned by Israel.

Israel responded to the assault with a large air, land and sea offensive that has killed no less than 36,096 Palestinians, in line with Gaza’s Health Ministry, which doesn’t distinguish between fighters and civilians in its rely. Round 80% of Gaza’s inhabitants of two.3 million has been displaced and United Nations officers say components of the territory are experiencing famine.

Magdy reported from Cairo. Related Press author Jamey Keaten in Geneva contributed.

Observe AP’s protection of the warfare at https://apnews.com/hub/israel-hamas-war

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