Gaza War: Palestinians flee Jabalia after Israeli forces withdraw.


image caption, A UN agency said the operations in northern Gaza had “caused further displacement and fear for thousands of families”.

Heavy fighting was reported in Jabalia, northern Gaza, after the Israeli army withdrew into areas where it said Hamas had regrouped.

Residents who fled said they saw tanks moving towards the Jabalia refugee camp, which has been under heavy shelling since Saturday.

Palestinian armed groups also said they were fighting soldiers in the camp.

Meanwhile, the United Nations says 360,000 people have been displaced from Rafah in the south since the operation began a week ago.

The Israeli army has ordered the evacuation of the eastern third of the city, where more than a million Palestinians have taken refuge.

On Sunday, US Secretary of State Anthony Blanken warned Israel that a large-scale offensive in Rafah without eliminating Hamas could spark “chaos”.

His comments echoed briefings by unnamed senior Israeli military figures to Israeli media, who said a resurgence of Hamas in northern Gaza was a sign of the Israeli government's lack of a specific plan for the “aftermath” of the war. is due to

The army scaled back operations in the north after announcing in January that it had “eliminated” a Hamas battalion there. But it left a power vacuum in which the group has been able to rebuild.

According to the head of the World Food Programme, an estimated 300,000 people trapped in the ravaged area also face “total starvation” due to a lack of aid supplies.

Residents who were filmed fleeing Jabalia on foot on Monday morning said they decided to leave after seeing tanks advancing in the area.

“We don't know where to go. We are displaced from one place to another,” one woman told Reuters. “We're running in the streets. I saw it with my own eyes. I saw tanks and bulldozers.”

The military wings of Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad – which are both banned as terrorist organizations by Israel, Britain, the US and other countries – said their fighters had fired mortars, anti-tank missiles in and around the Jabalia camp. They are targeting Israeli forces with missiles and machines. Guns

The Hamas-affiliated Safa news agency also reported clashes between Palestinian armed groups and Israeli tanks near several UN-run schools east of the Jabalia camp market that were being used as shelters by civilians.

The official Palestinian news agency Wafa, meanwhile, reported that two people were killed in Israeli attacks on homes in the Jabalia camp on Monday, and several others were killed in an attack in the town of Jabalia.

He also cited the ambulance crew as having recovered the bodies of 20 civilians in Jabaliya so far and taken them to Kamal Adwan Hospital in Beit Lahia.

There was no immediate comment from the Israel Defense Forces (IDF).

On Sunday, the IDF said troops had launched an operation in Jabalia last evening “based on intelligence on Hamas' efforts to regroup its terrorist structures and operatives in the area”.

This happened when the citizens there were asked to leave for western Gaza City.

The IDF also said it was working to “eliminate terrorists and eliminate terrorist infrastructure” in the Zeitun area in eastern Gaza City.

Safa reported that Zaytoun was hit by Israeli shelling on Monday morning.

The UN agency for Palestinian refugees, UNRWA, said the bombing and evacuation orders had “further displaced and created fear for thousands of families” in northern Gaza.

UNRWA also warned that affected civilians, like the estimated 360,000 who fled Rafah last week, had “nowhere safe to go”.

After seven months of war in Gaza, Israel insists victory is impossible without capturing Rafah and eliminating the last remaining Hamas battalion. But the United Nations and Western powers have warned that an attack from all sides could lead to mass civilian casualties and humanitarian devastation.

image caption, The Israeli military said its operation was based on intelligence that Hamas was regrouping in Jabalia.

There have been scenes of despair in Rafah since the IDF said last Monday that it was launching a “consistent operation” against Hamas in eastern Rafah.

On Saturday, flyers were dropped ordering residents to evacuate more eastern neighborhoods, including areas closer to downtown.

Scott Anderson, UNRWA's deputy Gaza director, who is based in western Rafah, told the BBC on Monday that the Israeli operation had now “stretched about a third of the way across Rafah” and encircled the Old City. Is.

He said he could hear explosions and airstrikes, and that the fighting had affected hospitals and many UNRWA facilities in the Rafah refugee camp, including a primary health facility.

Palestinian media reported that four people, including a child, were killed in an Israeli airstrike on a house in the neighborhood of Brazil on Monday, just southeast of the camp.

Hamas's military wing also said it had targeted Israeli forces east of Rafah.

Many people who have taken refuge in central and western areas not subject to evacuation orders are also leaving, fearing that the Israeli operation will soon escalate into a full-scale offensive.

Ghada al-Kurd, a mother of two, told the BBC on Monday that she had recently fled Deir al-Balah in central Gaza – the seventh time she has been displaced during the war.

He said the streets of Deir al-Balah were “full of sewage” and the destruction of homes and infrastructure was “not like Rafah, much bigger”.

He added: “I'm lucky enough to have a house, but most other people are and are living in tents. [suffering from] Heat, lack of water and lack of food.”

Deir al-Balah is part of the IDF's designated “extended humanitarian zone,” which stretches from the al-Mawasi coastline in the north to the city of Khan Yunis and the Gaza Strip in between.

The IDF has told evacuees that they will find field hospitals, tents and aid supplies there, but UNRWA's Mr. Anderson said it lacks the necessary infrastructure.

In al-Mawasi, he explained, “everything that people have access to has to be trucked in… including food, water, solid waste”.

“For those who are being displaced from Khan Yunis, it's very similar… still recovering from the Israeli operation a few months ago.”

Mr Anderson also called on Israel and Hamas to agree to the establishment of a “fixed corridor” that would allow UN trucks to safely enter and exit the nearby Karim Shalom border crossing with Israel. Which is an important point for aid.

Israel said it reopened the crossing last Wednesday after it was closed for four days due to Hamas rocket fire that killed four Israeli soldiers. But the UN said the hostilities in eastern Rafah made it too dangerous to collect aid.

The Rafah border crossing with Egypt has also been closed since Israeli troops took full control of the Palestinian territory last Tuesday.

In a statement issued on Sunday, Hamas accused Israel of “increasing its barbaric massacres in various areas of the Gaza Strip”.

Israel launched a military campaign in Gaza to destroy Hamas in response to the group's cross-border attack on southern Israel on October 7, which killed nearly 1,200 people and took 252 others hostage.

More than 35,090 people have been killed in Gaza since then, according to the Hamas-ruled territory's health ministry.

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