Israel orders mass evacuation of Palestinians from part of Gazan city

World

The Israeli army has ordered a mass evacuation of Palestinians from the eastern half of Khan Younis in southern Gaza.

Israel wrapped up its offensive in the city earlier this year and withdrew most of its forces, but this indicates that troops could soon return.

Much of Khan Younis was already destroyed in a long assault earlier this year, but large numbers of Palestinians have since moved back in to escape another Israeli offensive in Gaza’s southern-most city, Rafah.

it comes as Benjamin Netanyahu said Israel is almost finished with eliminating Hamas’ military capabilities in Gaza.

Some 37,900 Palestinians have been killed and more than 87,000 injured in the ongoing military offensive by the IDF, Gaza’s Hamas-run health ministry has said.

Image:
Khan Younis in southern Gaza Strip. Pic: AP

Residents of several neighbourhoods in eastern Khan Younis said they had received audio messages from Israeli phone numbers ordering them to leave their homes.

In a statement on Monday, the Israeli military said rockets fired into Israel had been fired from the Khan Younis area.

Islamic Jihad, an ally of Hamas – both of whom are backed by Iran – said its fighters fired rockets towards several Israeli communities near the fence with Gaza.

The volley of about 20 rockets caused no casualties, the Israeli military said.

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Al Shifa hospital director released

Also on Monday, Israel released the director of Gaza’s main hospital, al Shifa, after detaining him for seven months.

Speaking after his release, Mohammed Abu Selmia alleged that he and other detainees were held under harsh conditions and were tortured.

He was held without charge or trial over allegations the facility had been used as a Hamas command centre – claims he and other Palestinian health officials have denied.

“Our detainees have been subjected to all kinds of torture behind bars,” he said.

There was almost daily torture.” He said guards broke his finger and caused his head to bleed during beatings, in which they used batons and dogs.

There was no immediate response from the prison service, which has previously denied similar accusations.

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