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Israel: The army controls the Rafah crossing – Humanitarian aid in Gaza is “in the air”

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<p class=The Israeli Armed Forces (IDF) claim they have taken control of the Rafah crossing on the Gaza side as it claims it was “being used for terrorist purposes”.

The Israeli Armed Forces ( IDF) have taken control of the Palestinian side of the Rafah crossing between Gaza and Egypt, which is a key strategic objective and the only gateway between Egypt and Gaza for humanitarian aid.

“Right now we have operational control of the Gaza side of the Rafah crossing and we have special forces sweeping the crossing… This is happening in the next few hours. The operation is not over … I can't give a timeline,” a military official said Tuesday morning.

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Indeed the Israeli Armed Forces (IDF) released video showing tanks checking the Gaza side of the Rafah crossing on the Egyptian border on Tuesday morning.

IDF: 'Rafa crossing was being used for terrorist purposes'

In an operational update on its official Telegram channel, the IDF claims it targeted the Rafah crossing because it had “information indicating that the crossing of Rafah in East Rafah was used for terrorist purposes”.

Describing the operation as “expensive”, the IDF claimed that “prior to the operation, the IDF encouraged residents in the eastern Rafah area to temporarily move to the expanded humanitarian area in Al-Mawasi, where the IDF facilitated the expansion of field hospitals , of tents and increasing water, food and medical supplies. International organizations working in the area have also been encouraged to temporarily evacuate before the operation begins.”

“Following information indicating that the Rafah crossing in East Rafah is being used for terrorist purposes, IDF troops were able to gain operational control of the crossing on the Gaza side. On Sunday, mortars were fired from the area of ​​the Rafah crossing towards the area of ​​the Kerem Shalom crossing, killing four IDF soldiers and injuring several others,” the statement added.

Still the IDF claimed to have killed around 20 Hamas fighters and to have identified “three operational tunnel shafts”. They still reported that the business is still going.

The Israeli army's claims have not been independently verified by the Guardian.

The flow of humanitarian aid to Rafah has been suspended

The spokesman for the Gaza border authority confirmed on Tuesday the presence of Israeli armored personnel carriers at the Rafah crossing. Aid officials in the area said the flow of aid through the pass has been cut off.

Three humanitarian aid sources confirmed to Reuters that the flow of humanitarian aid has been halted. entire population facing famine, according to the UN.

This development effectively halts the flow of humanitarian aid to Gaza, as the IDF announced that the Kerem Shalom (Karem Abu Salem) crossing is also closed on Tuesday for security reasons and will reopen as soon as the security situation permits,

This was despite the fact that on Monday, Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu told President Biden that he would ensure that the Kerem Shalom crossing between Israel and Gaza would be open for humanitarian aid.

“Full” invasion is very close

According to Al Jazeera correspondents, it was a very difficult night for Rafah and especially the last 12 hours, it was very violent, very bloody and full of destruction, as the Israeli army has deployed all kinds of weaponry in the eastern part of the city.

Indeed the Israeli army's control of the crossing strategically cuts off the Gaza Strip and seals it off from the area. At the same time, given that the crossing is almost in the center of the city, this suggests that a full IDF invasion of Rafah is very close.

The Israeli operation comes before new indirect ceasefire negotiations are held in Cairo as part of a deal which the Palestinian Islamist movement said last night it had given the green light.

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Palestinians inspect the scene of an Israeli attack on a house in Rafah (Source: REUTERS/Hatem Khaled)

“Israel is receiving a response from Hamas … an Israeli delegation will be in Cairo soon,” the military official said.

The promise to resume talks left a glimmer of hope for a deal that could bring at least a pause in the seven-month war that has devastated Gaza.

At least 15 dead in Rafah

The Israeli military said late Monday that it was carrying out targeted strikes against Hamas in Rafah. Kuwait City's hospital said on Tuesday that 11 people were killed and dozens more wounded by the Israeli strikes.

According to Al Jazeera Arabic, three people were killed in an Israeli airstrike on the al-Darbi family home. west of the town of Rafa. The three people come to join at least 12 other people who have been killed in separate raids in Rafah overnight,

After vowing for weeks to invade the southern border town, Israel on Monday called Palestinians in eastern Rafah to leave for an “expanded humanitarian zone” before a ground invasion.

The Rafah Gate is a vital lifeline for aid and particularly sensitive for Egypt, which is anxious to to avoid a mass exodus of Palestinians into the Sinai desert.

The more than 1 million Palestinians taking refuge in Rafah were left reeling by the day's events, with Israel's evacuation order prompting an exodus of thousands.

source: In.gr

Source: 24h.com.cy

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