Israel strikes Rafah as pressure mounts over conflict in Gaza

By , K24 Digital
On Mon, 27 May, 2024 07:41 | 2 mins read
A fire rages following an Israeli strike on an area designated for displaced Palestinians in Rafah, Gaza, on May 26. PHOTO/ Reuters
A fire rages following an Israeli strike on an area designated for displaced Palestinians in Rafah, Gaza, on May 26. PHOTO/ Reuters

At least 35 people were killed in an Israeli strike on a camp for displaced people in Rafah on Sunday, according to the Gaza Health Ministry and Palestinian medics, shortly after Hamas fired a barrage of rockets at Tel Aviv for the first time in months.

Gazan authorities and medics say the attack hit a displacement camp that had been designated by Israel as a "safe zone." The Israel Defense Forces(IDF) said the bombardment hit a militant compound in the area, killing two senior Hamas officials.

Videos shared on social media show a large fire at the site, which included a large container used as a shelter for dozens of families, surrounded by hundreds of tents.

Israel war in Palestine

Horror in Rafah: Gaza's Health Ministry said those killed and wounded in the strike were mostly women and children. Video obtained by CNN shows tent-like structures on fire. The Palestinian Authority's presidency urged the international community to intervene immediately. Hamas described the attack as a "massacre" and said it holds the US administration and President Joe Biden personally accountable. Doctors Without Borders (MSF) expressed horror following the airstrike, saying it "shows once again that nowhere is safe."

Hamas officials killed: The Israeli military said two senior Hamas officials were killed in the Rafah strike, which it said was "based on precise intelligence." The IDF said it killed Yassin Rabia, who it said was the commander of Hamas' leadership in Judea and Samaria, and Khaled Nagar, who it said was a senior official in the Hamas wing for the same regions. It said the strikes, including the harm to civilians, are now under review.

Rockets fired: The Rafah attack came after sirens sounded across Tel Aviv and other parts of central Israel on Sunday, with the IDF saying eight rockets were fired from the Rafah area and had crossed into Israel. It marks the first time rockets have been fired at the city since late January. Hamas claimed responsibility for the attack and the IDF said "a number of projectiles" were intercepted.

Strike on Jabalya: An Israeli airstrike in the northern Gaza city of Jabalya killed at least four people Sunday, according to medics at the scene. Four others were injured and many are still unaccounted for after the strike hit a residential building in the Al-Nazla neighbourhood. A journalist said Jabalya witnessed an intense night of airstrikes and shelling, and that during the day, many fires were raging throughout the area. 

Aid trucks: Israeli military officials said 360 humanitarian aid trucks entered Gaza on Sunday following security checks. This includes 126 trucks from Egypt that crossed into Gaza through the Kerem Shalom crossing, the IDF said.  Aid workers and United Nations officials have repeatedly warned that the dire humanitarian crisis unfolding in Gaza is due in large part to Israel's tight restriction of ground deliveries into the enclave.

Hostage talks: Negotiations between Israel and Hamas for a ceasefire and hostage swap deal are set to resume in Cairo on Tuesday, according to an Egyptian official. Talks between Israel and Hamas have stalled for months, with both parties failing to reach an agreement over differences on key demands. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has expressed strong opposition to the demands made by Hamas leader Yahya Sinwar.

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