Israeli forces intensify Rafah strikes as diplomats seek to salvage Gaza truce


Mourners wept over the bodies of those killed in an air strike that hit the Tel Al-Sultan neighbourhood. The corpses were laid out in white shrouds. A man carried the body of a small child in a black bag.

“Suddenly in a blink of an eye, rockets fell on children, women, and elderly men. What for? Why? Because of the upcoming ceasefire? Usually, before any ceasefire this happens,” said resident Mohammed Abu Habib.

Emad, 55, a father of six sheltering in Rafah after fleeing his home elsewhere, said the greatest fear was a ground assault with nowhere left to run: “We have our backs to the (border) fence and faces toward the Mediterranean. Where should we go?”

Israel says it takes steps to avoid civilian casualties and accuses Hamas militants of hiding among civilians, including at school shelters and hospitals, leading to more civilian deaths. Hamas has denied this.

Aid agencies have warned of a humanitarian catastrophe if Israel follows through on its threat to enter Rafah, one of the last remaining areas of the Gaza Strip that its troops have not moved into, where people are desperate for shelter.”We’re living in a place meant for animals,” said Umm Mahdi Hanoon, standing among the cages of a chicken coop where her family is now living with four other families. “Imagine a child sleeping in a chicken crate … sometimes we wish the morning won’t come”.



This article was originally published by a www.channelnewsasia.com . Read the Original article here. .