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UN Calls Prospect Of Complete Israeli Invasion Into Gaza’s Rafah Terrifying

Approximately 130 of the original 250 hostages taken by Hamas more than four months ago are still thought to be held in Gaza, however, Israel believes 29 of them have died

Prospect

Volker Turk

The United Nations said Monday that the prospect of a complete Israeli invasion into the crowded Gaza town of Rafah was terrifying and might result in an extremely high number of casualties.

UN human rights chief Volker Turk urged world powers to restrain rather than enable as more than one million Palestinians besieged in the territory’s far south were more concerned about a ground incursion.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has vowed to send ground forces into the populous Rafah area as part of his efforts to eliminate Hamas.

His declarations have caused international concern.

In a statement, Turk stated, “A potential full-fledged military incursion into Rafah — where some 1.5 million Palestinians are packed against the Egyptian border with nowhere further to flee — is terrifying, given the prospect that an extremely high number of civilians, again mostly children and women, will likely be killed and injured”.

Turk went on to say, “Sadly, given the carnage wrought so far in Gaza, it is wholly imaginable what would lie ahead in Rafah”.

“Beyond the pain and suffering of the bombs and bullets, this incursion into Rafah may also mean the end of the meager humanitarian aid that has been entering and distributed with huge implications for all of Gaza, including the hundreds of thousands at grave risk of starvation and famine in the north”, Turk continued.

The Gaza war started on October 7, when Hamas launched an unprecedented attack on Israel, killing around 1,160 persons, the majority of whom were civilians.

Approximately 130 of the original 250 hostages taken by Hamas more than four months ago are still thought to be held in Gaza, however, Israel believes 29 of them have died.

Israel has replied with a relentless attack in Gaza, killing at least 28,340 Palestinians, the majority of whom are women and children.

“My office has repeatedly warned against actions that violate the laws of war. The prospect of such an operation into Rafah, as circumstances stand, risks further atrocity crimes”, Turk added.

He stated that those who violate international law have been put on notice and accountability must follow.

“The world must not allow this to happen”, Turk urged.

“Those with influence must restrain rather than enable. There must be an immediate ceasefire. All remaining hostages must be released. And there must be renewed collective resolve to reach a political solution”, Turk noted.

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