Israel seeks to force 400,000 People from Homes in North Gaza

GAZA CITY (Ma’an) — The Israeli military on Monday evening sent text messages and phone calls to residents of all cities in the northern Gaza Strip and parts of Gaza City telling them to evacuate their homes “immediately,” potentially displacing more than 400,000 people.

The military said in a statement that it had told the residents of Shujaiyya and Zaitoun neighborhoods in northern and eastern Gaza City as well Jabaliya, Beit Hanoun, and Beit Lahiya cities in northern Gaza to evacuate their homes and leave for central Gaza City.

The Israeli military has previously said that it would treat all civilians who stay behind in areas it had deemed off-limits to be combatants.

The warnings come after an Israeli drone strike killed 10 people in a playground in al-Shati, after Gaza militants fired rockets into Israel earlier in the day in response to Israeli shelling.

Israeli shelling and airstrikes on Monday killed 22 and injured more than 100, while medical crews found 12 more bodies in the rubble, bringing the total number dead since the beginning of hostilities 21 days ago to at least 1,067.

Four Israeli civilians were killed in a mortar shell on the city of Eshkol near the border, in the deadliest incident for Israeli civilians since the beginning of hostilities 10 days ago. The deaths bring the total to six, as well as one foreign workers killed in a rocket attack.

The UN’s Palestine refugee agency UNRWA said early last week that 43 percent of the Gaza Strip had been deemed off-limits to civilians.

The Israeli assault has already displaced 135,000 people in the last 21 days, as more than 2,000 homes have been destroyed and the Israeli army has told tens of thousands of flee their homes.

All borders in and out of the Gaza Strip are shut to civilians, however, and UN-designated shelters have been bombed repeatedly in Israeli airstrikes and shelling.

Operation Protective Edge was launched 21 days ago in what Israel said was an attempt to stop rocket fire from the Gaza Strip, which had increased after Israel launched a massive operation in the West Bank that left 10 Palestinians dead, 130 injured, and more than 600 Hamas-affiliated individuals in prison.

The operation, named “Brother’s Keeper,” was launched in order to find three Israeli teenagers who disappeared in June from the Jewish settlement of Gush Etzion in the West Bank.

Israel blamed Hamas for the kidnapping without any evidence, a charge the group denied.

Hamas has said since the assault began that it would only accept a ceasefire on the condition that Israel ends its eight-year blockade of the Gaza Strip, which has led to recurring shortages of basic necessities as well as electricity, fuel, and water.

Israel, however, has refused to accept this condition, saying it would keep the assault going until it undermined Hamas’ military capabilities, particularly its tunnels system.

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3 Responses

  1. Saw Netanyahu et al on AJ last night announcing these plans, and it rather answers your prior question of whether Israel has gone “too far.” Their tone was that of someone announcing a resolve to do something absolutely nasty. The answer is that they apparently intend to go quite a bit further, and they really just do not care what you, I, or the rest of the world think. They kept coming back to that close-minded, and increasingly hollow and desperate line, that “we will not compromise our security.”

    They’ve gotten into a spin they appear to be incapable of recovering from.

  2. Israelis hubris will cause Israel to go too far and fall over a cliff, and suffer massive damage.

    10,000 years of history says Israel will eventually suffer massive, humiliating defeat and lose everything.

    So sad when people are so blinded by hubris and ego.

    • I won’t say the Israelis, but the zionists started the whole process 66 years ago, and put a lot of conviction, manipulation, military power, money, diplomatic influence, and so on, into the whole process, and it would appear it’s NOW too late for any Peace Process to be established once and for all. The Peace Process was a no go to start with as soon as a new right-wing Israeli administration would take over Israel, or as soon as a converted pacifist Israeli prime minister would be killed for his belated conversion. The Israeli problem is mainly internal: the ones opposed to Israel’s wrongdoings have no voice in trying to stop Israel, or are moving out of the country for fear of their security. The problem is also external: the western main media (press, radio, TV, and even Internet sites) belong mostly to zionists or pro-zionist owners. BDS might be the only proven and possible solution thus far.

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