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Israel conducts airstrikes on Rafah in Gaza Strip, resulting in 7 fatalities

Tel Aviv, April 17 (IANS) – The Israel Air Force conducted an attack on a building in Rafah, southern Gaza, resulting in the death of seven individuals. The attack took place early Wednesday morning despite warnings from the US and other allies about the high civilian population in the area of approximately 1.3 million people.

The Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sissi, during a meeting with US Secretary of State Antony Blinken in Egypt, emphasized the importance of preventing an Israeli attack on Rafah. The concern is centered around a potential influx of refugees to the Sinai region of Egypt, which shares a border with Rafah, in the event of an attack.

Since the ground invasion of Israel Defense Forces (IDF) into Gaza on October 27, 2023, following the Hamas attack on October 7 last year, the death toll among Palestinians has exceeded 33,000. Despite Israel’s proposition to evacuate civilians, including women and children, during military operations in Rafah, the US remains unconvinced due to the potential for heavy casualties.

Israeli intelligence agencies, including Mossad and Shin Bet, have alerted the Israeli war cabinet to the presence of numerous hostages in the Rafah area. It is suspected that Hamas militants are utilizing these hostages as human shields, further complicating the situation in the region.

IANS

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