Netanyahu Confirms Rafah Invasion Plan: Hamas Ceasefire Proposal Rejected

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu confirmed the Rafah invasion plan. His office announced on Friday that preparations for the evacuation of civilians could begin.

The United Nations and humanitarian organizations describe Israel's actions as catastrophic for civilians. An estimated half of Gazan citizens live in Rafah. Many of them had to take refuge there after being forced out of the enclave's north under siege. The city is also a major land distribution point for humanitarian aid.

Even Israel's main ally, the United States, has said it cannot support such a military operation. Either way, the government intends to attack what it considers a Hamas stronghold.

The Prime Minister's Office also announced that it would reject a six-week ceasefire proposal by Hamas. The offer included the surrender of 42 hostages a day in exchange for a ceasefire that would allow 500 humanitarian trucks to enter Gaza daily.

In exchange for the deal, the Islamic movement demanded the “complete withdrawal” of the Israeli military from the Gaza Strip – where Israeli military action has so far caused nearly 31,500 deaths, according to Hamas – and its “reconstruction” and the end of which has been under siege since Hamas took power in 2007.

The Israeli government has called the movement's demands “unrealistic”.

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