Civilians told to evacuate Rafah

Civilians told to evacuate Rafah

The Israeli army has told Palestinians to begin evacuating eastern Rafah, according to an Israeli Defence Force statement on Monday, signalling that a ground invasion is imminent.

People were told to move to Muwasi, an Israeli-declared humanitarian area near the coast. The army said it had expanded assistance into the area, including field hospitals, tents, food and water.

The announcement comes amid fragile ceasefire talks and ahead of a highly anticipated ground offensive that Israel has been vowing to undertake for months to weed out the remaining Hamas militants.

On Sunday, defence minister Yoav Gallant claimed Hamas was not serious about a deal and warned of “a powerful operation in the very near future in Rafah”.

His comments came after Hamas attacked Israel’s main crossing point Sunday for delivering assistance, killing three soldiers.

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