Israel warned residents of Jabalia, the largest refugee camp, and Khan Younis, the largest city in southern Gaza, to flee their homes. Tel Aviv’s massive bombing campaign against the besieged enclave has already displaced about three-quarters of Gaza’s 2.3 million residents. The White House supports Israel expanding its military operation in the Strip.
The United Nations reported that 1.7 million of the 2.3 million Palestinians living in Gaza are now displaced due to Israeli military operations. 900,000 people are taking shelter at UN facilities. In addition, over 13,000 Gazans have been killed, including 5,600 children. 4,000 are missing, potentially dead or dying under the rubble.
After a Hamas attack on October 7, Tel Aviv placed the Gaza Strip under total siege. The destruction of medical facilities and other infrastructure, as well as a lack of aid, has created a humanitarian catastrophe in Gaza.
The situation will continue to deteriorate as Israel is now demanding the evacuation of two densely populated regions in Gaza. On Sunday, Jabalia and a nearby coastal camp were ordered to evacuate. The Israeli military was “expanding its operational activities in additional neighborhoods… of the Gaza Strip.”
Last week, The Israeli Air Force dropped leaflets on Khan Younis that instructed residents and internally displaced Gazans to leave for their safety. It is unclear where the Palestinians can flee to as shelters are already overcrowded.
The White House supports Israel’s expanding operation in Gaza but hopes Tel Aviv will agree to delay opening the new fronts. “In the event that we believe that Israel is likely to embark on combat operations, including in the south, we believe both that they have the right to do that, but that there is a real concern, because hundreds of thousands of residents of Gaza have fled now from the north to the south at Israel’s request,” US Deputy National Security Adviser Jon Finer told CBS News’s “Face the Nation.”
“We think that their operations should not go forward until those people – those additional civilians – have been accounted for in their military planning. And so, we will be conveying that directly to them and have been conveying that directly to them.”
It does not appear Israel is listening to the American requests. On Sunday, Israeli air strikes killed 80 people in Jabalia.