Israel Launches Rafah Invasion

In the early hours of Tuesday, May 7, Israeli forces began a military invasion in Rafah, the last refuge for Palestinians where over 1.4 million individuals have taken shelter.

Despite recurrent calls by international organizations and activists around the globe warning of the catastrophic consequences of such a move, Israel has once again set another humanitarian disaster into motion.

Palestinians seeking refuge in the area were ordered to evacuate early in the day, despite it being the literal final point of displacement for Palestinians who evacuated from northern, central and southern Gazan areas. 

As Israeli tanks approached the crossing near neighboring Egypt, the latter closed its borders, effectively trapping individuals in the Strip.

As of today, no one inside Gaza is allowed to internally or externally travel. Additionally, and as was noticed by many humanitarian and international organizations, the invasion further impedes the entry of aid to Gaza, as the crossing was the main point for the delivery of humanitarian assistance.

While Hamas approved an Egypt and Qatar-mediated ceasefire agreement last night, Israel later rejected it and launched their ground invasion today. 

Political analysis suggests that the invasion came right after the agreement fell apart, representing another failure of mediators and negotiators to end the aggression on Gaza.

Ignoring the Calls for Abatement

Despite their ongoing support amid Israel’s ongoing genocidal campaign, allies such as the United States have signaled that they would not support an operation such as the invasion of Rafah, stating that the operation poses “grave humanitarian risks”, with Israel yet again disregarding such stances.

A spokesperson for the Israeli army said that it is evacuating 100,000 people from east Rafah, an area of about 30 square kilometers, but the evacuation orders have reached other areas as people struggle to find safety amidst absent safe areas.

Al Jazeera reports that the Israeli army has ordered Palestinians to evacuate to the town al-Mawasi on the Western coast of the Gaza Strip.

A few hours ago, Israeli tanks were documented invading Rafah and destroying numerous structures inside the crossing.

According to a statement by United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres more than two months ago, an attack on Rafah would be the “final nail in the coffin.” Today, this statement risks becoming a reality after more than seven months of Israeli bombing that killed at least 34,789 individuals in Gaza, including more than 14,500 children, and injured more than 78,204 individuals, while tens of thousands are missing or estimated to be under the rubble.