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Israeli army takes the Palestinian side of the Rafah crossing, in southern Gaza and on the border with Egypt

The Israeli Army confirmed this Tuesday the capture of the Palestinian part of the Rafah crossing, which connects the Gaza Strip with Egypt and which serves as one of the main entry points for humanitarian aid into the enclave, after weeks of threatening a possible military offensive against the city, which is home to nearly 1.4 million Palestinians.

Thus, it has stated through a statement published on its website that the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) have begun “targeted activity” in “limited areas” in eastern Rafá and has added that the objective is “terrorist infrastructures” of the Islamic Resistance Movement (Hamas).

“As part of the operation, the IDF has taken operational control of the Rafah crossing, on the Gazan side, following intelligence information indicating that terrorists were using it for terrorist objectives,” he said, before emphasizing that the Sunday Hamas launched an attack with projectiles from the area against the surroundings of the Kerem Shalom pass, an event that resulted in the death of four soldiers.

Along these lines, he stressed that they have also been “attacked and destroyed” a series of “terrorist targets” of the Palestinian Islamist group, including “military buildings”, “underground infrastructure” and “other terrorist infrastructure”operations that have resulted in the death of around 20 “terrorists”.

“The forces have so far located three tunnels in the area,” he detailed, while emphasizing that so far there have been no casualties among the military. Furthermore, he has assured that before the start of the operation, he carried out “preliminary coordination” with international organizations operating in the area so that they abandon it.

The Israeli Army called on Palestinians living in the eastern neighborhoods of Rafah on Monday to leave the area in the face of an imminent military offensive, amid international warnings about the humanitarian impact of an attack on the city, in which the majority of the inhabitants are displaced from other parts of the Gaza Strip.

For its part, the Gaza Crossings and Borders Authority has confirmed the suspension of passenger traffic and the entry of humanitarian aid after the Israeli operation, according to the Palestinian newspaper ‘Filastin’, linked to Hamas. The Army has also published videos and photographs showing its forces in the area.

The spokesman for the Gaza Crossing and Border Authority has denounced that the Israeli authorities “sentence to death” the Palestinian residents by blocking the crossing, which adds to the extension of the closure of the Kerem Shalom crossing, closed on Sunday after the cited attack perpetrated by Hamas, as reported by Army Radio.

In this sense, the United Nations Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA) has warned this Tuesday that the “continued interruption” of the entry of aid through the Rafah crossing will worsen the “catastrophic famine” in the enclave.

“The continued interruption of the entry of aid and fuel through the Rafah crossing will halt the key humanitarian response throughout the Gaza Strip,” the agency said in a message published on its account on the X social network.

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