Israeli forces attacked areas in the central Gaza Strip overnight, killing three people and wounding dozens of others, medics said, as tanks deepened their assault on Rafah in the south, residents said.

Israeli planes attacked a house in Al-Nuseirat camp, killing two people and injuring 12 others, while tanks shelled areas in Al-Maghazi and Al-Bureij camps, injuring many more people, health officials said. Nuseirat, Maghazi and Bureij are three of Gaza’s eight historic refugee camps.

In Deir al-Balah, a city full of displaced people in the center of the Gaza Strip, an Israeli airstrike killed one Palestinian and injured several others on Thursday, doctors said.

The Israeli military said on Wednesday that forces were continuing their operations across the enclave, targeting militants and military infrastructure, in what it described as “accurate and intelligence-based” activities.

More than eight months after the start of the war in Gaza, Israel’s advance is now focused on the last two areas that its forces had not yet attacked: Rafah, in the far south of Gaza, and the area surrounding Deir al-Balah , in the center. Operations have forced more than a million people to flee since May, the vast majority already displaced from other parts of the enclave.

In Rafah, near the border with Egypt, Israeli tanks stationed in the west and central areas of the city intensified shelling, forcing more families living in distant coastal areas to flee north. Some residents said the pace of the operation had accelerated in the last two days.

“Tanks have taken control of most areas of Rafah. People living near the beach have also started leaving towards Khan Younis and central areas in fear because of the continuous shelling,” said Abu Wasim, a resident of Al-Shaboura neighborhood in Rafah, who left his home a more than a week before the tanks arrived. reaching the heart of the city.

Rafah was home to more than half of Gaza’s 2.3 million inhabitants until May 7, when Israeli forces began their ground offensive on the city. Fewer than 100,000 are believed to have been left behind.

There was no sign of a let-up in the fighting as efforts by international mediators, backed by the United States, failed to persuade Israel and Hamas to agree to a ceasefire.

The armed wings of Hamas and Islamic Jihad said fighters engaged Israeli forces with anti-tank rockets and mortars and, in some areas, detonated pre-planted explosive devices against army units.

On Thursday, Israeli authorities released 33 Palestinians who had been detained over the past few months by Israeli forces in different areas of the enclave. The released detainees were admitted to Al-Aqsa Hospital in Deir Al-Balah, in the center of the Gaza Strip, after complaining of torture and ill-treatment by Israeli prison guards.

Israel denies mistreatment of Palestinian detainees. Palestinian and international human rights groups have criticized what they consider to be Israel’s mistreatment of detainees in Gaza and have repeatedly demanded that the country release their whereabouts and information about their well-being.

Israel’s ground and air campaign was triggered when Hamas-led militants invaded southern Israel on Oct. 7, killing about 1,200 people and taking more than 250 hostages, according to Israeli records.

The offensive left Gaza in ruins, killed more than 37,400 people, according to Palestinian health authorities, and left almost the entire population homeless and destitute.

Since the week-long truce in November, repeated attempts to achieve a ceasefire have failed, with Hamas insisting on an end to the war and Israel’s full withdrawal from Gaza. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu says he will agree only to temporary pauses and will not end the war until Hamas is eradicated and the hostages are freed.

Via Reuters.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *