The planned assault on Rafah, in southern Gaza, has led to significant international alarm, with many expressing concerns about the potential impact on civilians. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has stated that the Israeli army will ensure “safe passage for the civilian population” in light of the planned assault. However, there are concerns about a potential catastrophe and humanitarian crisis.
Gaza authorities have warned that an attack on Rafah could result in “tens of thousands” of casualties. EU foreign policy chief Josep Borell has echoed these concerns and urged Israel to take steps to avoid a humanitarian catastrophe. Al Jazeera reported that 25 people died in an Israeli attack east of Rafah, with additional individuals being injured and a building being hit.
The Israeli government is working on developing a detailed plan to facilitate safe passage for civilians and ensure their safety during the planned assault on Rafah. In addition, safe zones for civilians are being considered in areas north of Rafah that have been cleared. Netanyahu emphasized the importance of this mission and stated that victory is within reach. He dismissed concerns about a potential catastrophe, stating that it is necessary to defeat Hamas.