Destroy Hamas – Israel plans evacuations ahead of Rafah offensive

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Israel’s upcoming military operation against the Islamist Hamas in Rafah in the southern Gaza Strip is likely to begin with an evacuation of the civilian population that will last several weeks. This is expected to take between four and five weeks, Israeli radio reported on Thursday. This is the first phase of the ground operation in the city on the border with Egypt.

Israel’s allies have been warning for months against such an operation in Rafah, because hundreds of thousands of Palestinian displaced persons are pushing themselves there. However, Israel believes that the operation is essential to ensure the destruction of Hamas’s fighting capabilities. Otherwise, the terrorist organization could regain its strength after the end of the war. There are also suspected hostages in the town on the border with Egypt who were abducted to the Gaza Strip on October 7 during Hamas’s major attack on Israel.

People should come to tent camps
According to information from the Wall Street Journal, the Israeli military plans to take a gradual approach to limit civilian casualties. The newspaper wrote about two to three weeks of evacuation and six weeks of offensive. Israel apparently wants to take the civilians to tent camps, such as the Al-Mawasi camp on the Mediterranean Sea. However, it is doubtful whether so many people can be accommodated. Aid organizations speak of a catastrophic humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip; a large number of houses in the coastal strip have been destroyed.

Security Cabinet informed, Hamas prepared
According to Israeli radio, ministers in the security cabinet would be informed on Thursday about preparations for the Rafah operation and about the status of indirect negotiations with Hamas on a ceasefire in the Gaza war. The Israeli war cabinet also wanted to meet on Thursday.

The Israeli broadcaster also reported that Hamas had already prepared its fighters in Rafah for the operation and provided them with supplies and weapons. The number of guards for the hostages has also been increased.

Source: Krone

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