Gaza: At least 25 Palestinians were killed in an Israeli bombing of a house in the southern Gaza Strip city of Rafah on Sunday, according to the official Palestinian news agency WAFA.
Many displaced people were living in the house at the time of the bombing, and dozens of others were injured, said the report.
Mayor of Rafah Ahmed Al-Sufi warned on Saturday that: “Israeli bombings have escalated in recent hours in Rafah, paving the way for a military operation in the city.”
The Hamas-run government media office also warned of a “global catastrophe” if Israel carries out a military operation in Rafah.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Friday instructed the army to prepare plans for a ground operation in Rafah, the southernmost Gazan city to which over half of the 2.3 million Gaza residents fled during the conflict.
Since the start of the Israel-Hamas conflict in Gaza on Oct. 7 last year, about half of the residents there have fled to Rafah, adjacent to Egypt, in search of safety.
The number of displaced residents has grown after the Israeli army launched one of its largest attacks on Khan Younis, adjacent to Rafah, weeks ago.
The border city, which receives food and medicine aid from foreign countries and UN agencies through the Rafah crossing, is crowded with tents on empty agricultural lands, in schools and along roadsides.