300,000 flee Rafah as Israel increases military pressure

by ian


Three hundred thousand people fled Rafah this weekend as Israel increased military pressure on the city. Tank shells reportedly hit throughout the city yesterday after the Israeli military ordered new evacuations the previous day.

This comes at the same time as reports of fighting in northern and central Gaza. A military spokesman says those operations were to stop Hamas from regrouping. Humanitarian groups blamed the Rafah military operation for further disrupting aid distribution in south Gaza.

An official working in the United Nations Humanitarian Agency in Gaza says the people were severed from fuel and other supplies after the Rafah and Kerem Shalom crossings were shut down. But Israel blames Hamas for the closures, saying the militants target the crossing between Gaza and Israel.

Despite this, a spokesman says that 200,000 liters of fuel went through the Shalom crossing last week. In related news, Israel opened a new crossing into northern Gaza yesterday.