free hit counter code Israeli tanks seize control of central Rafah & troops move in as ONE MILLION people flee after ‘tragic’ missile strike –

Israeli tanks seize control of central Rafah & troops move in as ONE MILLION people flee after ‘tragic’ missile strike

ISRAELI tanks have seized control of central Rafah following a “tragic” airstrike which is said to have killed tens and injured hundreds.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu vowed to push on with Israel‘s campaign to eradicate Hamas and bring home all hostages as one million civilians fled the war-ravaged Palestinian city.


Israeli troops are seen near the border with Gaza Strip in southern Israel[/caption]


Fire rages after an Israeli strike on a camp in Rafah, thought to have killed 45 civilians[/caption]


Israeli military vehicles gather in Israel near the border fence with the Gaza Strip[/caption]


An injured Palestinian boy stands next to the rubble of a house following an Israeli strike on the Tal al-Sultan neighbourhood of Rafah[/caption]

Forty-five people are estimated by Palestinian officials to have died after an Israeli strike set a crowded camp in Rafah ablaze on Sunday.

The strike, described by Israeli PM Netanyahu as a “tragic accident”, also left hundreds of civilians with shrapnel and burn wounds, according to Gaza medics, and was heavily criticised by world leaders.

Israel launched the attack after Hamas fired a barrage of rockets at Tel Aviv – most of which were intercepted.

The deadly strike was intended to wipe out two senior Hamas members, said Israel’s military.

Israel’s aircraft “struck a Hamas compound” and killed senior Hamas officials Yassin Rabia and Khaled Nagar, according to the army.

Israeli tanks today amassed on the Al-Awda roundabout in the centre of Rafah, witnesses told media.

A Palestinian security source confirmed that tanks had been spotted in the city centre for the first time.

An additional brigade has been deployed by Israeli military to Rafah, where troops continue to locate tunnels and weapons and kill Hamas operatives, according to the Israel Defence Forces.

Israel’s military said dozens of sites – including observation posts and weapon depots – belonging to terror groups have been destroyed during its operations in northern Gaza’s Jabaliya.

Netanyahu remains steadfast in his commitment to destroy Hamas and bring home all of the hostages its militants dragged to Gaza on October 7.

Hamas sparked the ongoing war in Gaza when its brutish members slaughtered 1,170 people, according to an AFP tally based on official Israeli figures, and took 252 hostages to the besieged enclave.

More than 120 hostages are said to remain in Gaza, including 37 who Israel’s army believe are dead.

Israel’s retaliation on Hamas has killed more than 36,000 people in Gaza, according to the territory’s Hamas-run health ministry.

Continued air strikes and shelling rained down overnight on the enclave, including in Rafah’s Tal Al-Sultan area where the camp went up in flames near a UN facility for Palestinian refugees.

Resident Faten Jouda, 30, told AFP: “The situation is very dangerous.

“We didn’t sleep all night. There was random bombing from all directions, including artillery shelling and air bombardment as well as firing from aircraft.

“We saw everyone fleeing again. We too will go now and head to Al-Mawasi because we fear for our lives.”

Israel has declared the tiny nearby fishing village of Al-Mawasi a safe “humanitarian zone”.

One million civilians have fled Rafah since Israel launched its assault on the city earlier this month – amid bombardments, limited access to food and water, piles of waste, and shocking living conditions, according to the UN.

Netanyahu is facing louder-than-ever international opposition, as Ireland, Norway, and Spain today recognised the State of Palestine in a landmark political move made by only a few Western governments.

Spanish Prime Minister Pedro Sanchez said on national TV that “recognition of the State of Palestine is not only a matter of historic justice… it is also an essential requirement if we are all to achieve peace”.

He added: “It is the only way to move towards the solution that we all recognise as the only possible way to achieve a peaceful future: that of a Palestinian state living side by side with the State of Israel in peace and security.”

Israel slammed the move as a reward for the Hamas movement, and the country’s foreign minister Israel Katz told Sanchez via X: “You are a partner to incitement to genocide of the Jewish people.”

He compared Spanish minister Yolanda Diaz with Iran‘s supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei and Hamas Gaza chief Yahya Sinwar, after she called for a free Palestine “from the river to the sea”.

Spanish Foreign Minister Jose Manuel Albares said Spain, Ireland, and Norway governments would issue a “calm but firm” coordinated response to Israel’s furious reaction.

EU foreign policy chief Joseph Borrell said he was “horrified” by the strike on Rafah and French President Emmanuel Macron “outraged”.

A US National Security Council spokesperson meanwhile said that Israel “must take every precaution possible to protect civilians”.

Israel’s response to deadly camp strike

By Jessica Baker

ISRAEL faced global condemnation in the wake of its airstrike on a Rafah refugee camp, estimated by Palestinian officials to have killed 45 people.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said the strike had gone tragically wrong – but the war in Gaza will continue nonetheless.

He said on Monday: “Despite our best effort not to harm those not involved, unfortunately a tragic error happened last night.

“We are investigating the case.”

Speaking in Hebrew to the Israeli Knesset, the prime minister added that Israel will not “surrender” or “end the war before all its objectives are completed”.

He said: “The pressure directed at home and abroad towards the Israeli government, which is fighting with all its might to return the hostages, only hardens the positions of (Hamas leader Yahya) Sinwar, who demands from Israel surrender conditions that endanger its existence, and therefore we cannot agree to them.

“I would like to make it clear: I am not ready to surrender and retreat. I am not ready to end the war before all its objectives are completed.”

The strike left some 200 people wounded and 45 dead, according to the government media office in Gaza.


Israeli troops amass near Israel’s border with Gaza[/caption]


Smoke rises following Israeli strikes during an Israeli military operation in Rafah[/caption]


Palestinians flee Tal al-Sultan with their belongings[/caption]


Palestinians inspect their tents in Rafah after an Israeli army operation[/caption]

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